Tuesday, April 10, 2018

betty's bay

Back when Day Zero looked like it was going to be a real thing my parents took a rental on a house near the sea for the month of April, thinking they could work remotely and still have regular showers. That we could come out to do our laundry and wash our hair on the weekends.

We've staved off Day Zero for this year at least, but they kept the rental, and the girls and I joined them out there for a few days last week during school holidays.

How to set a Frieda trap: leave a Gary Larsen omnibus on a window seat scattered with comfy cushions.

In Betty's Bay the sea is crisp and clean, the smell of it fresh in your nostrils, the sound soothing to your ears. Kelp undulates gently on the swell. White beach pebbles canoodle with crisp seaside plants and shards of mother-of-pearl, yellow-orange lichen and dark green milkwood trees.
The clouds come easily over the mountain, casting a gloom which enhances all those colours, all those smells, making the world feel more subtle, more cosy, less exposed.
It's a good place to recoup, to hide out for a bit.

We were joined there by my 'god-sister'. Daughter of my god-mother. For an irreligious family we take this bond seriously and Caitlin has been family for as long as I can remember - literally. She was 8 when I was born and tells how she was SO EXCITED until she realised that I didn't really do anything much. She remembers asking her mum if I was ever going to be fun?
She was a big sister figure for most of my childhood and when I was 18 or 19 I would stay with her in her digs in the big city - a huge adventure for me - while attending Winter School at the University and flexing my baby wings.
Caitlin lives in NZ now, I last saw her at my wedding 14 years ago, but she's been home to celebrate her 50th birthday and it was wonderful to spend time with her, and share her with my daughters.
She's still a big girl, with long dark brown tresses and an easy giggle.
The best people are the ones with whom time has no dominion.
The best places too.

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