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Pauline Duthie, principal of Christchurch Girls High School, takes up the role of principal at Dunedin's Columba College next month.
What is one strong childhood memory?
Riding my new red Raleigh 20 for the first time alone to a friend's house just around the corner and getting a thumb tack in the tyre, pulling it out without thinking and then having to wheel the bike home.
What is your least favourite thing about humanity?
I very much like people, but my least favourite thing about humanity as a group would be our collective inability to learn from our own mistakes and history.
What is your message?
Education is the lightest thing you can carry with you through life. So make the most of the opportunities you have at school. Gain the skills and qualifications you need because they will allow you to create your own future and then it can't be predetermined by others.
If you were going to an island and could only take three things, what would they be and why?
I am assuming that I am alone on a deserted island. If just going on a holiday, my list would change.
My current favourite book (The Birth of Venus, by Sarah Dunant). To misquote C.S. Lewis, "it would give me hope that I would not be alone for long and, so, sustain my mental well-being.''
A Swiss Army knife to help with food gathering, protection and shelter.
A lighter. Top of Stephen Fry's list of 100 gadgets. I would it need it because I don't have a single Bear Grylls-type bone in my body and would need it for fire and to be able to light a beacon.
You are a new addition to the crayon box. What colour are you, and why?
Green. For me, the colour of nature and life.