80 and still delivering papers

LAUREN PRIESTLEY
Last updated 13:00 29/01/2014

Granny dances to Lil Wayne

Miriam
TOP JOB: Auckland City Harbour News editor Catherine Healy thanks 80-year-old Miriam Muzyka for her hard work. She has been delivering the paper since 2008.

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Miriam Muzyka's feet are used for two things - dancing and delivering newspapers.

The grandmother from the Auckland suburb of Ponsonby is turning 80 today and can still be seen delivering the Auckland City Harbour News weekly around the suburb.

She became a well-known face last year when a passer-by caught her busting a move on Ponsonby Rd and put a video of her online.

The clip has received more than 100,000 likes on Facebook and been shared more than 15,600 times since then.

The once-prominent artist can still remember doing her first dance to Teddy Bears' Picnic when she was 5.

"Dancing and art have always been there for me. I think because I wasn't communicating very well those things shone through."

Muzyka came to New Zealand when she was 13 after growing up in England as a shy, dyslexic child.

"I didn't want to come here at all.

"I had heard about it - volcanoes and Pakeha and Maori - I was terrified."

But she soon learned to love the country she would eventually call home.

She left school in year 10 to start work and returned to Avondale College as a 40-year-old to finish her schooling.

"Once I got the hang of studying I quite enjoyed it," she says.

Muzyka gained University Entrance and embarked on a bachelor of arts but had to abandon it when her Russian husband died in the 1980s.

She was left alone with two young children and no income so delivering pamphlets and newspapers was a way forward, she says.

Muzyka enjoys her walks around the neighbourhood with the newspapers but says the video brought a little more attention than she would have liked. She has even been given gifts of cash and food by complete strangers who recognise her.

"I've been stopped on the street so many times. People are so nice when they see me walking down the road with my trolley."

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- Auckland City Harbour News

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