Let’s Do The Time Warp (Again!!)

As with all good things, this once-in-a-lifetime trip had to come to an end at some point.

The transition from New Zealand On-Vacation-Gal to Back-In-California-And-Returning-To-Reality-Gal is going to be an interesting one!

How did I spend my last half day in New Zealand? Pretty much in the way I’d spend many of my days: I woke up early, had what has become my standard breakfast of plunger coffee and toast with that lovely New Zealand butter and marmite, and an apple so I could pretend I was being healthy. I listened to the radio while doing my final packing and organizing. I will say that I’ve been VERY good about not leaving things behind in places I’ve stayed, and the “tight” packing system I used has served me well. I did ship yet another box home on Friday, this time of silly souvenir things that I got for people at work. There was just no way in heck it was going to fit into the suitcase! Darryl’s cat, Turtle, was being extra cute, and rolling around on the deck outside when we were sitting there. How on earth can anyone resist spending time petting something as adorable as this?:

Way too cute to resist! Yes, Turtle, I love you too!

Way too cute to resist!
Yes, Turtle, I love you too!

I had plenty of time to take a walk around the neighborhood, resisting temptation and passing up several Saturday morning yard sales, and it was no surprise that I ended up at the local New World grocery store where I had my second-to-last flat white…and decided to go ahead and have a custard slice to go with it because, what the heck, I was leaving and it’s not something I’d get at home. YUM!! The tiny coffee shop inside the New World had some very tempting choices, and trust me when I say it was a difficult decision to pick the perfect hobbit-eating-style “second breakfast” slice.

How's that for pretty?  Even the tiny cookie was good.

How’s that for pretty?
Even the tiny cookie was good.

Nice presentation, eh?

Nice presentation, eh?

Great magazine!

Great magazine!

Once I’d finished at New World it was back to the house on Tennyson for a final walk through and load up of the rental car. I had to return the house keys to my friend Darryl at his bookstore, so it was back down to the shop one more time.

Colombo Street detour, oh so familiar now!

Colombo Street detour, oh so familiar now!

This fellow stands guard at the side of the Arts Centre carpark.

This fellow stands guard at the side of the Arts Centre carpark.

Pretty sure that's bits of the actual Arts Centre that the sculpture is made from.

Pretty sure that’s bits of the actual Arts Centre that the sculpture is made from.

Arts Centre Ball 2

Bookshop sign

Entry into the group of container shops across from the Arts Centre itself.

Entry into the group of container shops across from the Arts Centre itself.

A tiny peek at Arts Centre Bookshop

A tiny peek at Arts Centre Bookshop

From there it was only a 15 minute drive to return the rental car and then take the shuttle to the Christchurch Airport. Getting home involves two flights: Christchurch to Auckland, which is only an hour and a half flight, then the LONG flight…12 hours from Auckland to SFO. Not counting the time one spends in the airports themselves, pre-flight, going through security or walking between domestic and international terminals. And DO NOT get me started about how long it took to get my suitcase once I finally landed in San Francisco!! At least customs was pretty darn quick.

Time to say goodbye to the blue Toyota Camry!

Time to say goodbye to the blue Toyota Camry!

Even the airport was getting ready for Chinese New Year!

Even the airport was getting ready for Chinese New Year!

Part of the display.

Part of the display.

YES!! The final flat white came from "my" airport airstream coffee trailer people. LOVE THEM!!

YES!! The final flat white came from “my” airport airstream coffee trailer people. LOVE THEM!!

Follow the green line to get from domestic to international terminals.

Follow the green line to get from domestic to international terminals.

ANZ plane

Huzzah for Hobbit / LOTR sculptures in airports!

Huzzah for Hobbit / LOTR sculptures in airports!

There early? Follow the instructions: RELAX

There early? Follow the instructions: RELAX

Pohutukawa carpet at the departure gate (photo by EO)

Pohutukawa carpet at the departure gate
(photo by EO)

The long flight was made a bit better by my excellent seat selection: aisle seat in the exit row right across from the bathrooms and in the spot where the flight crew’s seats are for take-off and landing– which meant that there was TONS of leg room and no row of seats in front of me to recline into my face/space! Yes, it’s uncomfortable no matter what you do or where you sit. And no, I cannot sleep on the plane and that makes for one heck of a long night. But the meals are good and the stewardess was great and the fellow in the window seat (the center seat was, amazingly, EMPTY!) was nice and we chatted quite a bit about everything from medical supplies (his line of work) to what I call free-range childhood, books, technology, what to see in Cleveland, Ohio and what to do on a very short stop-over in San Francisco.

Now I am home. And with fresh eyes I look at my house (and soon at work!!) and figure out what stays and what goes. Amazing what a couple of months away from someplace will do for your attitude / perspective. I really feel like I have a bit clearer vision on what’s necessary, and how very important it is to get things cleaned up and out. How some of the abundance of “stuff” (read: clutter) would be better if someone else had it. How it’s time to get caught up on projects, or let them go entirely. How much PEOPLE and experiences matter, and how very little most “objects” really do. I’ll keep posting things to the blog, not nearly as often, but I want to keep sharing some of the fun things I see on this side of the Pacific Ocean. I’ll really really really miss New Zealand and friends there (both two- and four-legged!), and at some point I’ll start another count down to a future trip. Maybe to Aotearoa, and maybe to somewhere else. Time will tell. And speaking of time, you know the fun thing about flying from New Zealand to San Francisco? I left Auckland, New Zealand at 7 p.m. on Saturday, flew overnight, and somehow managed to land in San Francisco at 10 a.m. ON SATURDAY!! Yes folks, I traveled back in time. How cool is that?!!

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6 Responses to Let’s Do The Time Warp (Again!!)

  1. EO says:

    Welcome home!
    Best of luck holding onto your new perspective – I hope ‘real’ life doesn’t smack you too hard too fast.
    And if your objects remind you of your amazing experiences, they are not clutter, they are cool. And can help hold a remarkable trip close by reminding you where you have been

  2. Gretchen says:

    Welcome home, Bonnie! Thank you so much for this blog and allowing us to take this trip with you. Looking forward to reading about adventures in the teardrop!!

  3. Sara Bartholomew says:

    Welcome home Bonnie – what an amazing trip you had! I look forward to seeing you at the bookstore soon.

  4. Phyliss says:

    Bonnie, I sure enjoyed counting down the days to your trip. See you soon at the store!

  5. nicole williams says:

    Hi there. How did you like Fly my Prettys you got from that very cool looking secondhand shop? Hope you enojyed our little town, hope to see you here again!
    From Nicole at Maungaturoto Secondhand Shop.

    • brabett says:

      Hiya Nicole!
      I LOVED the cd and the video. A really fun find in a really fun little shop! While I’ll be the first to admit that it was the artwork on the case that made me pick it up, I found the music and the story line really wonderful and I am very happy to have stumbled across both Fly My Pretties and your shop. I certainly would love to come again, but I am back at work at my bookshop here in San Francisco. If you ever make it over to my City by the Bay do stop by!

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