DAY 330...Thankful For Every Day

Awake on top of a hill, looking out at the most incredible view. Gosh, what a vantage point we have! I sit and look out of the back windows of Cuzzie for a couple of hours, just staring at the beautiful sight, at the waves and the Tasman Sea that just disappears into the horizon. The sky is clear and there are islands in front of us with seagulls whirling about above the ocean, doing a great impersonation of Jonathan Livingstone Seagull.

We are in the perfect position this morning for, right behind us, Mount Taranaki is in full view. We sit and eat breakfast, not too keen on actually getting the day underway or moving from this location. On top of this, Anna has a great book to finish reading and I also have a couple of books I need to start reading, as well a couple I need to finish reading, not to mention one book I will need to read again once I have finished this West Coast sojourn.

People and cars come and go. Some people just sit and admire the view, some go for beach walks with their dogs, while others (who we just happened to get talking to) are showing guests visiting New Plymouth this amazing place. We spent a good while chatting to Peter, Steve and Greg about the Jazz and Blues night that’s happening here tomorrow night, with the result that we are now going along to listen and enjoy the show. Thanks for the invite guys, we are totally looking forward to tomorrow evening.

We then head out to get some fresh air, driving up the northern flank of Mount Taranaki to go on a couple of gentle board-walk trails, the lower tracks of which have been described as the “Goblin Forests”. They were nice and gentle so our feet remained clean and dry, with no slipping today. Rather than call it a day, we headed down the road a little to do another short loop track, but very quickly discovered a very wet and rather muddy trail which was not at all what the information map had described! As we crossed our sixth stream, we started to question if we actually were on the short loop track! Having more or less decided that we must have got it wrong, I checked the map that we luckily had with us and, having studied it carefully, realised that we had indeed managed to get on the wrong track. Instead, we were on an outer, two hour-long hike back up to the village and information centre! Ummm no, not today, thank you! We turned and retraced our footsteps back to Cuzzie! By now, both of us had wet and muddy trainers; not the desired result at all! Dry, clean and easy was what we had wanted today. Oops, it had been my mistake! Back we headed into the city to go swimming at the local pools and get back to our rather lovely overnight spot.

It has been another challenge today and I’m not sure why, but these past few days I have felt impatient for the first time this month. Now I need to refocus, pull back and be content to wait, to align myself and as suggested, I don’t necessarily have to position myself on this side of the Cape! I could always return elsewhere to wait. Thanks Jase, for the reality check! Anna has asked me why I seem to be more frustrated this week than last. It’s a good question but I’ m not sure I actually have the answer to it. Let me think on that awhile.

Another day done, three new tracks walked and enjoyed, eighty more pool lengths swum and some really wonderful, positive calls from some really wonderful, positive people. My own feelings today, and every other day lately for that matter, have been to actually stop and remind myself of how brilliant each and every day is; that my days off the water are always open to adventure and to doing and seeing things that so many other people will never have the opportunity to do and see. My nomadic life has amazing highlights on a daily basis and each day, I remind myself of them. Thank you all for not only finding my journey interesting but for helping me to achieve my personal dream and, by talking about it and spreading the word about my passion for this epic adventure, thus helping to support The Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand.

My smiles today:
My ongoing relentless obsession.
Jeez, muddy trainers!
Being able to laugh at myself, in spite of everything.
Still being able to train and exercise, despite the weather.
Reading. Food for the mind.

My thoughts today:
"Be thankful for every day." - Pooh Bear.
“What day is it today?” asked Pooh. “It's today!" squealed Piglet. "My favourite day!" said Pooh.

Goodnight from Red, Anna, Pooh and Piglet. Ma Te Wa.

Red contemplating the first creek crossing.

Red contemplating the first creek crossing.