It is time to get on with our story. Enough lingering over Hawkes Bay and our interlude with this lovely, character rich but (admittedly) simple way of life. For those of you who have asked, no we haven’t bought a house…yet. Though truth be told, we talk about the possibilities and at night I dream some exquisite dreams.
When the sun rises, a new reality begins. And so it was with our Hawkes Bay visit which came to an end. Time to move on and time to say hello to a new adventure. Packed, fed and TomTom iPod charged, we were (physically) ready to go. Our plan was to drive south to Wellington, New Zealand and do a quick stopover before heading to the South Island.
If you read my last post, you know what’s coming next. The trip from Napier to Wellington is more than 300 km long. And given that car rides and my family don’t mesh, Armon and I did all that we knew to do short of drugging the kids. We gave them each their own iPod with freshly downloaded content. Listening to concurrent episodes of Blues Clues and Wizards of Waverly Place for 6 hours straight is far superior to enduring the complaints, whining and battling that characterizes our typical journey. Thus, we gave in to modern-day luxury and convenience. The near-term benefit far outweighed a nagging, distant concern that these devices might turn our kids’ brains to mush.
With iPod-absorbed kids, our trip was relatively uneventful. Of course we had the odd potty break, requisite puke pause and we did stop for ice cream 60 minutes shy of Wellington (because the kids were about to kill one another (if we didn’t do it first)). Other than that…the trip was pretty easy. The only other break we took was for lunch in Palmerston North (which was accurately described to us as “boring as bat-shit”). We stopped, we marveled at the town and its people, ate a mediocre lunch and then we high-tailed it down to our friend Katie’s house.
Katie is the sister of Armon’s friend Jerry and she served as a terrific host while we explored Wellington for a few days. We played in the morning, investigated by day and then stayed up late into the night talking and laughing. Her three daughters, Rosie, Poppy and Daisy became close-knit friends with Talia and Judah. And I think Armon wants to adopt the youngest, Daisy (or perhaps it is the other way around).
Our Wellington whirlwind was largely kid focused so we didn’t get into all the galleries and shops that were on my list of “To-Dos”. But the kids had an amazing few days. As I said, they made some sweet new friends. They also explored the waterfront and went to the Museum of New Zealand (Te Papa Tongarewa) where they learned about New Zealand’s origins, dinosaurs and earthquakes.
So, to Katie, Rosie, Poppy and Daisy – we say thanks and we miss you. You made our trip to Wellington full of fun, discovery and great memories. Take a look.
These pictures say it all.