Moving day again! We are leaving Napier today for Wellington on a 1:30pm bus. We have the morning to roam the city, so we spend an hour or so in the public library. For a small city, the library is well stocked with all of the ingredients one would expect from a library: books, magazines, DVDS, books on tape and more. Just as impressive are the numbers of people utilizing the services. There was one elderly lady who had her cane with her, but did not need it due to the library providing little shopping carts to carry the books to the check-out counter. She had 8 books in her cart and was still pulling off of the shelves. From the looks of her, it was questionable which would expire first, her or the due date of her books. I hope she has a codicil in her will to get those books back to where they belong. As they say “Good on her.”
We could not leave town without one last cup of java from our Glory coffee shop. We sat around and read the paper there absorbing the information about the storm that just peeked in at Napier but gave a full showing elsewhere. Then it was back to the hostel to collect our things.
While here, we came across a luggage sale. I have been wanting to replace my carry-on bag for some time; the zippers are getting temperamental. They had one about the same size on sale for $NZ64 with a 7 year guarantee. The saleslady assured me I would not need to return to Napier to make good on the guarantee if the need arose, so I bought it. Being a sentimental fool, I had difficulty parting with my old bag. It has served me well for seventeen years and is part of a set Ron and I bought our first year together. Sentiment has taken over; it is traveling with us still.
Our bus ride today is 5 1//2 hours. The bus was overbooked, so we had to wait for a second bus to arrive, which was fortunate. There were only six of us on it initially, though we did fill up and drop off plenty of others along the way. After 3 hours, we had to change buses completely. This shed a load off, but even better, the new bus was a double decker with plenty of room. Best of all, it had a bathroom.
Once more the scenery was spectacular. What occurred to me is that the roads are not oversized highways where highway hypnosis is a concern for drivers and passengers alike. The highways run through towns as well as wide open spaces, giving a full range of things to stimulate your senses. Trying to think of the colors of green I saw, this is the list thus far: green apple, lime green, avocado green, lemon-lime green (can you guess I did not have lunch?), forest green, emerald green, bluish green, mint green, and others that I cannot think of names to describe at the moment.
Traveling on a number of roads cut through mountains, there were these chicken wire type fences holding the rocks in place with steel girders. The way they protruded, the thought came that these were for sure over the shoulder boulder holders, a slang term used for bras or as Ron said the male version would be a rock strap (instead of a jock strap).
Our final destination was the Wellington railroad and bus station. From here we took a taxi to our bed and breakfast. As we made our way through the city, we could not help but notice how hilly the city is. Our driver kept saying what an ideal location we were in. It is only ten minutes to this and that from where we are staying. In the neighborhood of our bed and breakfast, the buildings remind us a great deal of San Francisco. The hilly streets add to this nostalgia. What the taxi driver failed to tell us is that we are ten minutes away from things if we were on a skateboard or had wings. By foot, it is a whole lot longer. Walk a block, use the respirator, walk another block, use the respirator again. These hills will be the death of me or the great fortune of taxi drivers.
This bed and breakfast is run by a man whose home as well as he himself was burned in a fire. His house has been rebuilt; his face is still a work in progress. His marketing makes it clear that he looks like the beast without the beauty. The social worker in Ron came out pushing him to book us here. It is quite shocking at first, but a friendly fellow he is without a doubt. Our room has room, which is quite an oddity thus far, this trip.
From the taxi window on the way to our B and B, we passed a Welsh bar. In the name of all of our Welsh friends, we felt a need to stop in for a pint. Martha and all of your descendents, we hope you recognize the sacrifice. It did make me want to return to Wales for a future get-away. Wandering around, we could not decide on a dinner spot, until we finally discovered Two Souls Bistro. What an excellent choice it was. Quiet, lovely surroundings, service that was superior, and the food was top par. It was a fabulous evening made better by finding a bus that passes our hillside B and B allowing us to travel beyond it causing us to walk downward to reach it. Life is good.