There’s no place like home

sky_behind

People often ask questions about home: where it is, what it’s like, if you miss it and if you’ll ever go back. It’s a conversation starter, an icebreaker. At the end of 2011, the year I finished high school, if you asked about my home, I would have politely told you, “I love it, and home is home, but I am TOTALLY READY TO MOVE OUT”. On the inside, I was pretty much screaming “CAN I MOVE ALREADY”. I’m sure you all understand me, I just needed a break.

The first time I returned home after I had officially moved out, was when I finished/survived my first semester of university. I had never felt so happy, and so appreciative of the little, but loving home I had grown up in, as I sat by the fire in Dad’s Lazyboy chair and my family milled around me, business as usual. What had felt claustrophobic was now pleasantly familiar, comfortably enclosing me like a mink blanket. What had felt inadequate, dated and confining, now felt just right.

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From the city to the coast

piha-postcard

I’ve lived in Auckland for about 6 months now, and last weekend I finally left ‘the city’. There have been work trips to Rotorua and Queenstown, and home trips to Wellington, but I haven’t strayed very far out of my self-made CBD-Ponsonby-Newmarket network. I’ve taken the bus out to the airport numerous times, crossed the bridge twice, and once travelled south to Papakura for Malaysian food (when the craving hits and colleagues have a car, you’ve got to!). When you live in the shadow of the Sky Tower, on the same street as your 9-5 job, and a carpark costs a quarter of the rent (so you don’t have a car because you’d rather enjoy life’s other offerings), you get pretty comfy with your surroundings.

However, my good friend Eva came through on her chariot and whisked me away for a walk in the weekend, and my grand plan to explore Queen Street went out the window (saving me lots of money but gaining me no new boots). As the motorway became a winding road slicing through a mountain range, I still hadn’t figured out that the walk ahead of me was going to be a two-and-a-half hour trek in the mud.

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My trip with The Boys

boys-trip-rustic-road

Never did I ever think I would be the tagalong to a ‘Boy’s Trip’. Going to a ‘Boy’s Night’ that lasts a few hours is already intense enough, and it’s very, very rare I dabble in one. But four days and three nights with The Boys? Save me. I’m already envisioning the booze, banter and badness. Sadly, there was no getting out of this one… I was going on my first ever Boy’s Trip, which was also (dun, dun dun) my first ever work trip!

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Once upon a winter

winter-snowflake

Last winter, I was an Otago undergraduate student, eagerly counting down the days until I could strip away that title and leave the little town of Dunedin behind me. I had a dream, of finally being ‘Lennie, the yo-pro’, living it up in the big smoke, living up large. This vision was the light in every dark I-can’t-believe-I’m-pulling-another-all-nighter tunnel and/or I-have-no-money-and-ASOS-is-having-a-sale moment, and it was also the (very imaginary, very non-existent) warmth getting me through those damp, dreary Dunedin days. This vision has now materialised, and it is officially my first ever winter as a yo-pro. For the record, it’s probably the warmest one I’ve ever had too- thank you Auckland.

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Moving up in the world

moving-up

I am a proud Wellingtonian, born and raised (although some people do not believe me- that’s a whole other story). I don’t use the word proud lightly, as for those of you who have had the privilege to meet, or befriend a Wellingtonian, you can tell that we love (absolutely, positively, love) the city we live in. Remember when John Key called us a dying city? Well at that moment, we had never felt more alive, as our hearts beat faster in anger, pain, anguish (#emotional). If we used the metaphor for passion as a flame, how Wellingtonians feel about Wellington would probably burn the place down (you know, strong fire, strong winds).

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