Posted on Sun 5 October 2008 at 08:40
as I typed the words 'road trip', the Chillis song just popped into my head and I had to put it on the stereo. Bloody great song eh?
What a busy few days!
Did my last day at work on my old Unit on Tuesday. They bought me some products from Lush and a really decent bottle of wine and did me an 'afternoon tea' as well. I was really touched and will miss most of them loads. Start my new job tomorrow but have been so busy I haven't stressed about it yet.
So we left here Tuesday evening and went up to the batch. Phoned the girl from there as she had gone to Hamilton on the Friday evening following school. She wasn't at all pleased to realise we had gone there without her. But as we were heading for Auckland, it made sense to knock an hour off by going up there that night. It was quite strange for me to be there without the girl and her mate and the dog. But it such a lovely, relaxed, laid back place to be that we enjoyed the respite of finishing work and really hitting the road the next day.
We left there just before 6am. It was cold but the ride on the Ducati was just stunning. As the sun started to come up the trees by the road were etched starkly in black against the skyline. It made me grin from ear to ear. Yet another of those 'I live here' moments. Something so simple about the country I have chosen to live in that just makes me really appreciate the life I lead now. And as the day lightenened, I sat on the back of the bike and watched New Zealand unfurl in front of me. Such a rich tapestry. So beautiful. So different from region to region. So MINE!! It's spring here and the shades of green in the countryside reflect that. The lush verdant colours of new growth. The beautiful spring shades that fill you with enthusiasm and a deep sense of a new beginning. Bloody amazing and humbling. And lambs....what's that about eh? Everyone KNOWS that lambs appear at Easter....but not here. It's so WRONG to see them skipping about in October! But the strange thing is I saw potato picking going on as we bowled along....Right, we have potato picking in Britain in October, so that's OK - but how can you have lambs at the same time? Beats me but that's the way it is.
And, before I forget.....we had panniers on the Ducati. The size of a kiddies lunch box....'get your stuff in there honey' he said. Right. Pack enough clothes and shoes for 6 days in that.....OK, I an under-exaggerating if you like. The actual size would be more like that of a large carrier bag that you might get from from a high class clothes shop. You know what I mean. Better than a bag from from the supermarket. The kind of plastic bag that has handles. But still not big. And I wouldn't have minded but once we got to Auckland, he managed to break the key in the lock of my one. Not his. Mine. I was left with what I stood up in and and a beach skirt that I put on over my running skins ( I wear them under my bike trousers). No nightshirt. No toothbrush. No face cream. I threatened that if I didn't have a change of clothes the next morning I would be wearing his jeans with 6 inches cut of the legs. And I would wear his boxers one leg at a time. Funny enough, we manged to get a new key cut the next morning....
Ended up in Auckland and stayed with Phil's cousin and his partner. They were lovely and I think it was really good for Phil to catch up with some of his family and old mates. But the whole point to this trip was a fact finding mission. Phil would ideally have liked to move back to Auckland. I said do the research, show me the evidence and convince me this is the right move for me and the girl. I wasn't overly sure it would have been the right move for us and actually being there and going to the Mason Clinic:
didn't convince me at all. Yes, they have a 35% pay weighting but would it make up for the 30 minute commute and all the rest of it? No, I think not. I went, I saw, I took it all in but at the end of the day, I don't want to move to Auckland. If I wanted to live there, I would have been there already. I really tried to like it but it just isn't what I want and need for me or the girl. Thankfully, for his own reasons, Phil decided it wasn't happening for him either.
So we headed back down the country to visit his ex-workmate Jason, his wife Heather and their 2 girls in Napier. We toured Napier for abour 15 minutes looking for their house and finally pulled in to fuel up. At that point I said to Phil...."Fuck Auckland.....I want to live here". In that quarter of an hour, I fell in love with Napier. I liked Hamilton, I have liked living round here but I saw a small part of Napier and immediately felt an affinity for the place. Even from the back of the bike, without stopping anywhere or having any real idea what the place was about, I KNEW I wanted to live there. See for yourself.
I'm not entirely sure what it is about Napier that does it for me but from the moment we rode in there, I loved it. Jason and Heather made us feel so welcome. I know they knew Phil but they didn't know me. And that's a big ask when you are putting people up . I felt entirely at home in their home and they were the ultimate hosts. Thank you so much for your generosity and hospitality. I asked their permission before I mentioned them by name - so thank you people for that. Your hospitality was greatly appreciated. These are people who used to live in Auckland and went to Napier on holiday. Kiwis incidentally. They loved it so much they decided they had to live there. I know now how they felt. Never has a place felt so right. This is the way forward. I went shopping with Heather so she could convince me to move there. That worked alright!! I considered buying the girl a little ornamental cat. but knew I wouldn't have enough room to take it back. Heather said ' the only way you will have room is if you swallow it! Really glad I hadn't wanted the ring holder shaped like an elephant on the shelf next to it cos that may have caused major problems if I did indeed swalow it........Anyway, back to moving. This will be happening by the end of January. They don't have a forensic ward there - which is all I have done since qualifiying but I can go back to elderly care or look further afield. The forensic field of nursing is pretty full on at times and I figure if you can do that then you can do anything.
Got back and my arse feels the size of Luxembourg. A bit stiff round the old knees. I sometimes forget I am actually 46....
Anyway, bedtime now, have spoke to my Shona and my Shane this evening. Shona said that my last entry made her cry. GOOD!! it means that one person in the world at least reads the monologue that I write!!
Happy days peeps!
See ya xx