Archive for the ‘Today’ Category

Today it is ten years since the Christchurch earthquake. The city where I spent my university years and met my husband, the second city of New Zealand, the city that had always been the major centre my family visited as I was growing up, the city I love changed completely ten years ago today. Now when I go, I need to use GPS, because so many of the major landmarks that helped me navigate are gone. There has been a major service today broadcast on national radio, and I will admit I shed a little tear as I heard the karanga, a Maori ceremonial call to begin proceedings. I haven’t visited the city for over four years, but I know it is still recovering.

Today is the beginning of the first week when my husband and I have (almost) no work to do on the in-laws’ house. It went on the market yesterday, with a deadline set for 9 March, and now we wait. We might even sneak away for a few nights somewhere. Our house is full of their things, of course. The Husband still has to go through some of them, deciding whether to scan documents and photos, etc. And we also have boxes for each of his brothers, taking up space, until we can arrange to post to them or (less likely) they can come and visit. Still, the urgency has gone. It’s a weird feeling, knowing that we are free.

Today I started a 30 Day Yoga Challenge. I’ve done them before, but over the last year I’ve really slipped with yoga, and I’ve decided I’ve noticed a decline in my core strength, and hence have had some back issues crop up again. (Though scrubbing and cleaning windows etc at the in-laws’ house has also been to blame). So by declaring I’m starting the challenge, I might actually feel the peer pressure to do it! I know I won’t do it in 30 Days. But I hope to stick to that if at all possible.

Today the sky is blue, I can hear the cicadas calling loudly outside my window, and the temperature shows that summer is still here. We’d hope that it would last until March, but we live in Wellington, and summer here is notoriously fickle! So we take each day as it comes. And so far this summer, we haven’t had any hot days (even for us), a few pleasantly warm days, and a lot of semi-warm/not really cold days! We’ve had meals out on the deck with friends, and the other night we had drinks on our deck with friends, going inside as the temperature dipped when the sun itself dipped behind the western hills. Tonight we’re planning a barbecue just for the two of us, because we never know if it will be our last chance. Summer in Wellington. We never take it for granted. It teaches us mindfulness, and taking joy in the moment. That’s not a bad thing.

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Today we emerged from hibernation.  Hibernation imposed by illness – winter colds – and days of gloomy, rainy weather, when the memory of something called the sun was fast disappearing.  Today was one of those days when Wellington is just perfect.  I felt better, and so left the house for the first time since Thursday.  With my headband covering my ears, my walking shoes, and iPod, I was ready to go.  It was surprising to have to find my sunglasses, and don them as well.  There was no wind.  Unless you’ve lived in Wellington, you probably don’t understand this.  I like to walk, but I don’t like to walk where I live.  If the hills don’t put me off, the wind does.  My ears get cold (hence the headband) and my eyes stream.  I look a sight, feel worse, and so regrettably don’t go out to walk as much as I would like to.  But today, ahhhh,  today it was still.

I wasn’t the only one with this idea.  We smiled and nodded at each other as we passed, all recognising the spectacular day.  I took it easy this first day after illness.  But I walked down the street towards the park, then detoured off to the right, up another hill, and suddenly the harbour stretched out beneath me.  I know it’s a cliché, but the harbour really was like glass, the only disruption to its smooth surface a decorative swish behind the little red tug.  The view made me smile.

I walked back, past a hoarding advertising a section for sale.  It would have a brilliant harbour view, is in a prime location, and have I mentioned that one of my dreams is to one day build my own house?  However the RV (rateable value) of the empty section is about the same as the RV of our house here.  So there go our retirement savings.  Or my dream.  For today, at least.

And so I walked home.  As spectacular as the view from the section is, it faces south, and by 3 pm had not seen the sun for several hours. I returned home, where I’d left the heating turned off, and the windows wide open. The house was bathed in sunlight, and the temperature inside was a surprising and delicious 21 degs C.  Maybe this place ain’t so bad after all.

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The hills on the other side of the narrow harbour channel were lush and green. The ranges, ever decreasing in height, dipped down to the deep blue, cold, but sparkling, sea, which reached across to the small bay where we sat, enjoying lunch with good friends. The sun shone brightly, and – for Wellington – there was no wind to speak of. It grew warm, and I shed my jacket. This late in the season, I was relaxed – no need to worry about sunburn now. The mushrooms and tomatoes were delicious, the coffee – only my second in the last month – was welcome. We talked and laughed and enjoyed our reunion, we hope one of many now that W is back from her four-year stint in Geneva.

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