Just Call Me Cassidy

Trip Start Mar 11, 2011
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of New Zealand  , North Island,
Thursday, June 23, 2011

...as in Hop-along (damn, how old am I?). If you're too young to remember, you'll have to google it.

It seemed like a great idea at the time. But then, it always does. Sue texted, asking if I was keen to join her for action netball. She plays for the company team and that night they were short a player. So I figured I'd probably be pretty crap as I haven't played for the past 17 years, that's half a lifetime ago! But hey, it should be a fun cultural experience as netball seemed to Kiwi females what rugby is to the males. Where exactly did it go wrong? Well, lets just say I was a little overkeen defending, jumping up to block with great gusto before landing with my right foot at a 45 degree angle to the ground, then falling flat on my @ss. I'd like to think I did so with grace and dignity in tact, but who am I kidding? So now I am left hobbling around with this swollen tender dark blue ankle wrapped up. Thanks to quick action from Dr Sue and Nurse Phoebe (the cat) I can keep the leg.

I guess these things are learning experiences. This time I've learnt 3 things - 1. It was overzealousness that caused my injury. It really wasn't important to win the game, besides they were already way in the lead and there were just 2 minutes left on the clock. But I always give my best, no matter what I do. I do stuff with mucho GUST-o! This is a good thing, but this time it was an overdone strength. Zeal + minimal skill = injury! 2. I find it hard to fake. I was kinda hoping  to be offered an upgrade, or at least a better seat in cattle class because of my ankle. But it's not in my nature to milk a situation especially when there are so many others more needy. And by the time our flight came around my ankle was feeling much better than it looked. 3. Kindness is still very much alive. So many people have offered me a seat, discussed my injury with great empathy, brought me stuff to save me hobbling around and two even offered for me to rest my weary ankle up on their knee.

As for the rest of our time in Auckland...

With Mr T sold we could let our hair down a bit (well, I could! ;-p). In fact, silly me even let Mario cut my hair. I try to disguise the style in the pics, hopefully it'll grown soon. Lets just say, it was acceptable in the 80's!

We had time to meet up with old friends - Dhanie, Jeril and their new baby daughter, Amretha. They fed us in true Naidoo/du style ;-D It was also good fun catching up with Rhys, an old uni buddy, and met his wife, Ilona, who has since given birth to their son, Lorenzo. (Yes, Chantal and Shaun, the same Rhys we bumped into about 5 years ago at Yates Leicester Square whose friends you knew!)

On the topic of babies... We have to admit that we've noticed a trend in our movements. Our friends in Cape Town had their first babies, then we left. Our friends in London started having babies, then we left. Two friends in NZ have babies... hehe!

We did some sightseeing but really, we largely hibernated. I guess we were still suffering from travel fatigue, and had already made that mental shift. And there was zero availability to bring our flights forward. Guess it's the time of year, and that damned ash cloud hanging over us. The Suberts very kindly let us stay longer than anticipated. Muchas gracias, guys!

We got to experience our first earthquake even though it barely registered on the Richter scale, at a lowly 2.8. It only lasted about 3 seconds and felt like the washing machine was on top spin and we were on loose wooden floorboards. It wasn't scary at all so we just continued eating our dinner.

A scarier experience while in Auckland was jolting  awake at 3am to what sounded like the end of the world, or perhaps the start of WW3! Armageddon outta here! Mario didn't seem to budge, which made me wonder whether I was just hearing things? But he was wearing headsets. Were those Aussie bastards finally attacking? (not my words, I imagine that's what a Kiwi might say!) Or was it a tsunami warning? Neither was the case. It was a truck moving a house slowly up the hill in the middle of the night. If they were steathily trying to steal it, they weren't doing a very good job!

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