I’ve been home now for four straight days and I’m already thinking about going back to New Zealand. Sort of. I always said I would return for a second trip, but when I was checking my points, I noticed that I had enough points to get me a flight to Auckland. And then it was like, Holy Crap! This could happen a lot sooner than I thought. Perhaps not tomorrow, but rather than five years later, it’s more like two maybe three years later. Of course it could just be that I’m missing Middle-Earth very much and I’m still longing for a volcano. Or it could be the jet lag that’s muddling my brain waves. Granted it’s not much of a time difference. When it’s quitting time for me, it’s actually noon in Wellington. But when it’s time to wake up in the morning to get ready for work, it’s 3am in Wellington. So by the time it’s quitting time, I’ve been wanting to nap for probably 2 hours already. It could be that I’m reminiscing with my friends and telling them how fantastic the trip was and answering all their questions such as what was my absolute most favourite thing that I did – Kayaking in Doubtful Sound, to what would I not do or avoid the next time I go to New Zealand – nothing really bad happened on this trip but I there are some places where I can say that I’ve been there, done that, don’t need to do it again such as The Forgotten World Highway and the Surf Highway. There are more things that I would like to do again than there are things that I wouldn’t do.
Doubtful Sound Kayaking trip for sure. Perhaps Milford Sound again. It would be nice to see it when the weather is nice. Seeing as Mitre Peak was completely cloud covered when I went back in January. But I did see some amazing temporary waterfalls. I might consider doing the complete Milford Track. I would return to Queenstown and Glenorchy and Paradise and perhaps walk a little bit more of the Routeburn track. Not the full track, but a little more of the Routeburn. I think I’m okay with skipping the Southern Coast such as the Catlins and Dunedin. I would definitely return to Arrowtown since it’s so close to Queenstown. I would spend more time in Wanaka. And instead of the two nights in Franz Josef, I would do three nights in Franz Josef. I’m okay with skipping Pancake Rocks but I would definitely return to Arthur’s Pass and spend two, maybe three nights there. Probably two. I will skip Christchurch this time and head right back to my little piece of heaven on Lake Pukaki. I would spend four nights there. This second time, I would drive up to Nelson and the Abel Tasman area to get in some good kayaking before heading to the North Island. Wellington would be a must, for sure. At least 4 nights to fit in Cape Palliser and the Pinnacles. I would have to time it right so I could get in the AMI Round the Bays again. And then I’d be on my way back to Tongariro National Park, for the Alpine Crossing and climbing Mt. Doom. I foresee another 4 nights there. Then it would be off to Rotorua and perhaps another visit to Hobbiton, maybe. But second time around, I might just start in the North Island and work my way down to the South Island and then from Queenstown, head home. I would definitely return in February, perhaps after Chinese New Year and depending on what I want to do, I would certainly consider another two month stint, at least 6 weeks. But who knows? It’s all just wishful thinking right now. There are some many things that could happen in two or three years. But wishes are just goals that haven’t been fully thought out just yet.
In the meantime, I have to get on with my life in Vancouver. It’s kind of weird. I hopped into the car and I had to think about how to drive. I actually turned the windshield wipers on a few times when the intention was to turn the blinkers on. Everything in my car seems to be on the wrong side. It actually feels like I’m driving on the wrong side of the road as well. Oh dear. I returned to work and discovered I have a new boss. That’s cool. It’s only been two days, but I’m still in vacation euphoria. I plan on making this euphoria last, if not forever, then at least another 50+ days, until the Sun Run and then the running can replenish the euphoria. I returned to my kickboxing class last night and was beaten to a pulp. I’ve got a really ugly bruise on my hand and on my shins. The last time I had such an ugly bruise was when I sprained it during the Tongariro Alpine Crossing. And no, it’s not a sprain. Though it does look kind of swollen. But it’s a part of the hand that can’t be sprained (this thought coming from me, with zero medical background). My shins aren’t that much better either. I forgot how to kick properly. Ai Yah. But at least my cardio is still good. I know it’s only been four days but I’m already setting new goals. I plan on registering for the Vancouver Sun Run. Whether I run or walk it, will depend on if Sister C joins me and also if my little niece will come along as well. I am already looking at other races as well. There is a half marathon on June 22 but there is also a 5 km run at at the same time. Then there is a 10 km run in September and then another 10 km run in October as well. Tomorrow I’ll be headed back to my spinning class. Normally on thursdays I would go to a Cardio Kickboxing class, but Sister C said that Josh was no longer teaching the class. And not that I need to have Josh teach the class, but the other instructor tends to focus more on kickboxing technique and I don’t want to get my Muay Thai Kickboxing technique confused with the Cardio Kickboxing class. So I have to stick with Faraaz. On the monday, I did try out a new exercise class called BellyFit: Warrior. It’s not my kind of class. I will stick with spinning on Mondays. It’ll soon be time for me to hunt out places to go hiking as well. There is still snow on the mountains, so it certainly won’t be higher elevation hikes. But vancouvertrails.com has some hikes listed as year-round. And I might look into joining a hiking club. I’ll have to see. I need to get settled back into home first and get used to the cold again. I think I might actually be coming down with a cold or maybe it’s just my body getting back into the routine of my hands and feet being freezing, again. Grrrr! and Brrrr! So far I’ve been lucky not to encounter snow. I know it snowed the week before I returned home. And It’s not like I’ve never seen snow before. It snowed before I left Vancouver two months ago. But seeing snow, after being in summer, even a southern hemisphere summer, would just be the like a fly in my L&P. Bleh!
Hopefully after this weekend things will feel more normal. Though it doesn’t help that it’s daylight savings time this weekend. So on Monday when I’m up at 6am, it’ll be like waking up at 2am in Wellington. Think Positive! Home Sweet Home? Yes. It was good to see the kids again. Wow have they ever grown! Little Brother Z talks so much more now. And Big Sister Z is more independent. And I’ll get to see Big Sister B and Little Brother N this weekend as well. Actually I’ll get to see all the kids this weekend. So yes. Home Sweet Home! It’s good to be back.