So having been in Wellington for almost 4.5 months, one would expect that I have been real busy and I have been; real busy working… I haven’t seen much. Being alone in a new country is exciting in its own way, but you want to wait for your people to arrive so you can share it with them. Before I started work, I embraced the novelty that is the working public transport system here, despite having a car available for use, I took a bus to the train station and a train into the city and I walked that city flat. Some of the times I felt shoes were not made for walking and by the end of the day, neither were my legs.
There is something special about not knowing where the hell you are. To date, google maps has been my trusted travel companion. There have been many times I have had to look down at my phone, find my location and figure out where the heck I am and where I need to be and carry on walking. 90% of the time I was pretty close to where I needed to be.
One of my first trips into the city was pretty overwhelming. I had a few days before I started work and after missing the IRD building twice while driving… I was then convinced that I would never drive into town again; that has changed though. So I took the train in after that and walked…. And walked…. And walked. Took a trip in the cable car… and then walked… and walked… and walked… I was blown away by how clean the city is, how people can walk up 50 stairs to get to their houses in the older areas, but also how beautiful everything is. There is such a mix of everything and you find yourself always relating what you see, to another place you know. I find Cape Town to be the closest match, but there are places that remind me of Durban, of Melville and even Maboneng, just a heck of a lot cleaner than Maboneng; but the same kind of vibe going on. I walked around with a smile on my face and happiness in my heart. It’s that excitement you feel when you get the best news ever and you want to stand up and tell the world; you are so excited your insides are shaking and you don’t know what to do with yourself. It’s a crazy cool feeling.
I think one of my favorite places to go now, apart from Oriental Bay is Paraparaumu. Not only is view while driving there something to behold, but I love the untouched beauty of the beach. It is just so rugged I love it. I sat one day on a piece of drift wood, closed my eyes and felt the wind just blowing against my face, the smell of the ocean filtering through the olfactory system and a smile broadening on my face. There was this sense of pure fucking disbelief that I was living near the ocean and it warmed my heart to the very core. I felt like I had arrived and it was a beautiful moment, one that I won’t forget any time soon. I also met an old man who went to Canada for a year and ended up staying there for 50, I really enjoyed the random conversation hearing the life story of someone else. We can get caught up in our lives, it was a pleasure to just sit and listen to someone else tell their story.
There are some really nice places close to home too. I love Mana and Plimmerton too and they are literally down the road. I would often get a coffee and just go and sit and admire the view. Good coffee shops too.
I don’t want to get to that place when I take any of this for granted. I feel that it is a real privilege to live in such a beautiful place, and a place that you can enjoy without any safety concerns in the back of your head. Ok, I lie, I still have some safety concerns, will take a while to shrug those off… But happy to be here, grateful to be here and I feel at home here. Yay for Candice.
Both Kelso and George are here now… so adventures of a different kind are taking shape… will get to that next time though…