Day 383...Jandal Day

Saturday 12 November 2016

In the early hours of this morning, I woke to heavy rain on Cuzzie’s roof. It was only 2.30am but I was wide awake. In order to not wake up Jase, who had arrived yesterday after work, I lay in my sleeping bag reading news and other stuff on my mobile phone. Most people would probably be upset to be wide awake at this time of the night but, for me, it really is no bother. A couple of hours later, I drifted back off to sleep until the sun got up. Then it was okay to stir and get up to enjoy a Saturday morning in Port Waikato with Jase and the Anderson family.

Walking to the beach with Jase and Jade (their dog) was nice, no rain and we had a stop at "Sylvia Cafe", a nice little weekend local. Back in time to see the results of the rugby league and the NZ Maoris, then a discussion on whether or not to go fishing. The decision was quickly made, no fishing or white-baiting today as the wind was blowing, the rain storms were becoming more frequent and so, by lunchtime, we decided to wait until tomorrow for a fishing excursion.

Then it was “What can I/we do this afternoon?” Thankfully we were told about a short walk in Oniwhero to Harpers Reserve and Vivian Falls. Off we headed in Jase’s ute with rain jackets but the incorrect footwear; jandals!! This really was a mistake because the hike was downhill, some of it was on gravel but a lot of it was clay and mud. Jandals on clay and mud, we really should have known better!! This really caused us both lots of slips and slides and, in the end, it was bare feet that won the day. Otherwise, the short forty minute each way hike was pleasant and the falls were really beautiful, even on this wet, blustery day.

I got up as close as possible, clambering over moss-covered rocks to stand and look upwards at the falls, the torrents of water and the way it cascades over the rocks. Jase was in charge of the camera and was laughing at me for being full of frowns when asked to look and smile. Today he got a couple of good, stern looks on film! But the great thing today was the large information board with the local history of the area and the falls (see the picture below of the story board).

Homeward bound, we take Klondyke Road which wound up and over the steep hills, then back down to the Port Waikato Road, another off-the-beaten-track trip and yet another place I would never have found or driven on but for this mad crazy journey I am on.

The river is brown and swollen, with white caps galore and, as we drive back to the surf beach, to my delight there are two kite-board surfers getting rigged up and heading out onto a foaming ocean. Even the ute was being sand-blasted and blown about today. We sat and watched in awe the amazing skills of the two guys as they literally flew up and down the beach on the waves and did jumps into the air, sometimes hovering for a long time while the kites carried them along. Skills I wish I had, maybe one day!

To end a pleasant Saturday, we sit in Cuzzie eating my most-loved "Proper" parsnip crisps and, when Jase isn’t looking, managing to have a mouthful or two of his beer. It’s cold, wet, windy and basically a bloody yuk weather day, but thanks to time spent chatting with my sounding-board person (Jase) I have a new list of things I need to do while I am stalled on this coastline. I have also managed to rationalise this most recent waiting game, having talking and discussed other moments which were, or seemed, way worse. Calmness has been restored! Well, for today anyway!

As the day draws to and end, I am still totally enjoying my time away from the crazy working world in which I was involved and I value each day as I am now. Thanking everyone for their continuing support and encouragement, that is and will be what will eventually get me back to Takapuna.

My smiles today:
The wild beach this morning.
Walking in jandals on clay, what a ridiculous idea!
Mud flicked all the way up my legs and back. Horrendous.
“Proper” parsnip crisps, what a treat!
My camper-van Cuzzie. I simply adore my life in her.
Hiking in the rain.

My thoughts today:
After this is all over, what will really matter is how we have all treated each other.

Goodnight from Red and Jase.

Ma Te Wa.


The Look!

The History of the Falls.

The History of the Falls.

Kitesurfers at Sunset Beach.

Kitesurfers at Sunset Beach.