Sunday, August 7, 2011

My parents' stay and one ring to rule them all

Mum and Dad spent four nights in Wellington last week and flew back to Timaru yesterday morning. We got on really well, maybe because I was at work all day and only saw them in the evenings! They really liked Wellington - it was the first time they'd spent more than a day here - and they said what I've been thinking in the last few weeks: all things being equal (which they rarely are), Wellington is miles better to live/work/eat/sleep in than Auckland. You can be yourself here more easily, it's got a soul that Auckland desperately lacks, and everything is far more convenient: the waterfront, shops, markets, eateries, bars, cinemas, theatres, etc.
Now I just need someone to experience all that stuff with. There are two problems I face: (1) people are scary, and (2) when I'm depressed I don't give a damn about "stuff". However I'm currently in my longest non-depressive spell for months.

We ate out twice, once at a tasty Thai and on Friday at an even tastier Italian. Those would be two of my three eating-out choices, the third being the rather bog-standard fish and chips. On Thursday we saw Soap at the St James. We were in the "cheap" seats (which at $50 they hardly were) at the front of the back section, if that makes sense. But as the show started everyone gradually moved forward to fill any gaps in the rows in front of them. Apparently it's tradition at the St James to do that; in my (limited) experience if you've got tickets for row J or whatever, you have to stay there. We did advance a few rows once we'd figured out what was happening, then it was on with the show. I didn't know what to expect, but it wasn't what we got. I guess I expected more water, some bubble bath, you know, soap. What we did get was an enjoyable mix of comedy and circus. We wondered if the performers were Russian gymnasts who didn't quite make the team. My favourite part (there were many contenders) was the woman who lay on top of a bathtub and juggled various objects with her feet.

After telling Mum and Dad how bad my flat was, they were pleasantly surprised. I think lowering their expectations (to almost zero) was a good move on my part. On Saturday I took them to the airport - a seven-minute trip which impressed them. Hopefully they'll be back fairly soon, and I can get a not-too-expensive flight to Timaru in the near future.

At 3:30 yesterday, disaster struck. I shut my front door behind me, and instantly I knew what I'd done. Shit. I'd locked myself out. After some serious fannying around (making phone calls, leaving messages in desperation, wondering if there was a caretaker with a master key, thinking of ways to force my way in, and finding out how much a locksmith would cost) I found one of the property managers' landline number in the White Pages. Some more farting around ensued but she got the spare key out of the office on Courtenay Place. I met her there; she charged me $50. A locksmith would have been about $250. I still had my car keys and was tempted to spend two nights in my car if I was locked out until Monday. I got back into my flat at sixish. That was a drama I could have done without but it was an accident waiting to happen. Having my car keys and my arsenal of house keys on separate rings, I was asking for it. I'd nearly locked myself out several times before. I've now got one ring (to rule them all) - a lot of keys to carry around but it's the only sensible option.

This morning we had blue sky and bright sunshine, the temperature was well into the teens and people at the waterfront market seemed to think spring was on its way. By afternoon the temperature had nosedived and it was horrible out there. Despite the weird Wellington weather, I think the move to my new(ish) home will be worth it in the long run.

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