Saturday in Wellington. More sunshine and a day to catch-up with others, but firstly we chat to a neighbouring overnight person at Evans Bay Marina. Ben; we met last night when he stopped to chat to us. Another kiwi on the road, taking time out from his day to day working life. Ben has a very colourful life and as I have said: everyone has a story. As Ben shared his with us, I could only laugh with him about what troubles he had got into over the years. We had watched him consume a few bottles of wine before he headed our way to say "hi" and this had made him rather talkative. Some may have been a little shocked by his life stories but they were what made him such a character. He retired to his car to sleep and then this morning we made him a couple of hot coffees before we both headed off in our different directions. Ben with his tooth brush in hand and us to see more friends in Wellington.
Thank goodness for google maps as we weave through the streets of Wellington for brunch and a catch-up with friends. We drink coffee, and then over the lunch table, with hot bowls of soup, we chatted and told stories. It was so enjoyable that it was hard to leave and head away to see others back down at the waterfront (Richard and his daughter Eden).
I am trying to talk about my past few months and share my highlights but, sheez, that would take way more than a couple of hours. In the end it is easier to just say it was absolutely incredible and if I try and pick just one favourite moment or location. (I actually can't.) The South Island has left a truly remarkable impression on me. Still to digest and still to dissect.
As the day races along it is a little tougher for me as I have to say goodbye to Jase; his time as my support person has ended. He has done as promised and crewed me over the final South Island leg and his wonderful clients now need him back to get them back into shape. We have an early Japanese dinner and then I drive to the airport to say goodbye. It is now that I start to look at the weather. I now start to wonder when I need to call upon my replacement crew to head down to drive Cuzzie. Not for a few days by the look of things. Time enough for me to adjust to my solo camper-van life again. Time for me to drive some of this coastline. Time for me to start watching the swells, the winds and the crashing West Coast waves. More wild West Coast rides, more new local stories, and much frowning at horror stories and comments. Cape Reinga here I come. I am looking forward to meeting and seeing you.
My smiles today:
Calm, sunny Wellington.
Peoples' life stories.
Japanese dinner and warm sake.
Seeing familiar faces.
My thoughts today:
Someday you will look back and know exactly why it happened.
Until tomorrow. Goodnight from Red.
Ma Te Wa.