Down To Earth

The days are beginning to be just days, now: up early, stumble down the stairs into the shower, out the door and down to the shops, into the car, into the office. Morning tea, lunch, afternoon tea. Meetings, emails, phone messages, stopping to chat to co-workers in the corridor, more meetings, more emails. The sun goes down a bit earlier every day but this week it’s been pretty warm and bright and it was even sundress weather today. Moore Wilsons, New World, bus, iPod, sunglasses; up three flights of steps to get home and then couscous salad with feta cheese and olives, sitting on the green-and-blue striped couch looking out at the bay, flipping through a magazine in yoga pants. The ordinary is so much more comfortable when it’s not tinged with the anticipation of everything going wrong that could go wrong.

I’ve only been back in Wellington a month but it feels like much longer; as the transition eases away (the suitcases are in the hall closet where they belong now, instead of on my bedroom floor) and I get my routine sorted out to the level I like it, the seven months I spent in the States seem like a long elaborate dream, with plots and subplots and scene changes one after the other. Now the long humid unemployed months in Miami seem formless and temporary, when I know that really they were dense and hard and weighed down with a little more anxiety, every day. Seattle blurs by without even a whisper, and Italy looks like a watercolor postcard from where I’m standing now. What was I doing, all that staggered out time? Where was I going?

Texting, doing the dishes, watching the news, yoga on the living room carpet. A mailing address, a borrowed hot water bottle under the new duvet cover, a few pictures on the wall, a key on the keychain I bought the day I got back from that first disastrous trip to Taupo in 2006. It’s the little things that make our lives, it’s the sediment that builds up over time. I’m drifting down to earth here, a soft controlled landing, in this big bright cold house on a hill over the bay, moment by moment, face forward, eyes up, burdenless, free.


  1. It’s great to hear you soooo matter-of-fact and non stressed about things. I knew (as did you I’m sure) that it was just a matter of time before things settled down and got into a routine… A routine that seems to suit you well and enable you to almost exhale and leave the somewhat crazily busy / anticipation heavy days, weeks and months behind….

    Enjoy the fading summer and coming autumn – enjoy looking out over that wonderful bay you have outside the window, enjoy your “new” life in NZ!!!

  2. That was like one big AAAHHH.
    I know I’m a creature who craves structure and routine – I’m guessing you are too. Controlled, short-term chaos is okay and sometimes necessary, but not my preference. I wish for a picture of your view!

  3. Long time reader, first time writer. I just ran across this online, and thought you ought to know about it: