02 February 2009

Catch-up (and a marriage!)

It has been so long since I actually wrote something about me (it’s alllllll about me). Prepare yourself for a long-winded summary of the last couple of months, complete with random interjection! I’m going to start with Xmas Eve...

Wednesday 24th December
I worked a half day on Xmas eve (technically it was a normal day, but reception was leaving at 1pm... I got a ride home with another girl around 12. C’est la vie!).

Once home, I had to finish packing for Omaha (yes, Xmas in Omaha, NZ, NOT Omaha, USA as my CHCH-challenged friend wondered!). Mum, Dad, Rich and I squeezed into one car (with all the luggage, food etc). Thankfully, it only took an hour and a bit to get there.

Aunty Jan, Uncle Gary and Caitlin were already there. The house was incredible (or should I say “houses”). It’s hard to describe, but I will try: there was a main house and a smaller ‘guest’ house to the side. A large wooden deck joined them together.

The guest house was a 2 storey box. On the bottom was Caitlin and my room; we had 2 single beds, bedside table, a nook with 2 chairs and a coffee table, and our own bathroom. The windows all down one side folded open onto the adjoining wooden deck. The other wall backed onto the staircase up to the second level. Jan and Gary had that – king-sized room, small balcony, and their own bathroom.

The main house had a large open living area that contained the kitchen (worthy of a TV cooking show, complete with walk-in pantry room with its own dishwashing machine and sink! It was as big as my bathroom at home), dining table (seated 10), and lounge suites/TV with sky/DVD player. The windows/doors down one side all opened onto the deck. Off that was another bathroom, and upstairs was a double bed (Mum and Dad). Richard got the fold-out couch (short-straw I think!).

Incredible. Not your typical holiday home (everything was supplied, and a house-keeper comes at the end and washes all the sheets, cleans etc).

Needless to say my Xmas present from Mum and Dad was them paying for my stay! (Although Mum did give me a 4 leaf clover for my Pandora bracelet).

I should be able to find the web-listing for the property itself, so you can see it in all its glory (darn not thinking of that earlier... wordy descriptions bite me!):

Omaha Holiday Home

No shots of inside the house, which is a shame, but you can see the separate area and the deck joining them together.

Thursday 25th December
We lazed about, and then congregated in the living area to open presents. I was Santa (better not say I have a resemblance!).

Rich cooked us a gourmet champagne brunch and we had a fab xmas dinner (bbq, salads, my favourite potato, followed by pavlova etc). We spent the times in between lounging about.

I taught Caitlin the card game ‘Bastard’ (I may have renamed it for her... I can’t remember), so a group of us often ended up playing that for hours on end.

Friday 26th December
(No comment on my Boxing Day – let’s just say that for all my time in Omaha it was a combination of: walking on the beach, drinking, eating, reading, and playing cards).

New Years Eve
Seriously doesn’t deserve its own heading! Mum and Dad came over for food, wine, trivial pursuit pop culture edition (ed: I rock at this game, except the sport questions... seriously, ‘Sport’ is not pop culture... really, come on!), a DVD (we managed to watch ‘Horton Hears a Who’... how DID that happen?! Funny film though), and the fireworks – we have a perfect view to Sky City. In bed just after midnight. Yes, I am a Nana. I’m working on changing that to ‘crazy cat lady’, but only have one cat so far. I fail.

Back in Auckland...
Movies: I saw ‘The Day the Earth Stood Still’, which was ok. I’ve not seen the original and had noooo intention of going to the movies to see this... But, I managed to screw up the session time for ‘Quantum of Solace’. This was the only other choice. Keanu and Jennifer were good in it. (ed: did end up seeing the new Bond. I thoroughly enjoyed it, despite the lack of gadgetry. I feel it was a great sequel... almost like a 1.5 if ‘Casino Royale’ was 1.)
I also saw ‘Benjamin Button’ with Mum and Dad; enjoyed it a lot. Had to try and keep the tears back at a couple of points. It definitely has a Forrest-Gump-ness about it.

I also spent my days:
1. Reading (Iron kissed / Patricia Briggs, The camel bookmobile / Masha Hamilton, Gene / Stel Pavlou, Savage grace : the true story of fatal relations in a rich and famous American family / Natalie Robins and Steven M. L. Aronson, and The Spellman files / Lisa Lutz). Note: Currently reading the sequel to The Spellman Files, Curse of the Spellmans – I recommend them both; like Bridget Jones crossed with Dirty Harry.
2. Watching – I caught up on too many to even remember (a few: In Bruges, Burn After Reading, Mummy 3, The Bank Job, Heroes Season 1 and 2, the rest of Dexter Season 3, 30 Rock Season 2, Tropic Thunder, Big Love Season 2...)
3. Lunch with Nalisha: my friend from Uni, who is over from London for a couple of weeks
4. Dinner with Jo and Becs
5. Haircut and highlights (same as usual; now my hair is a little lighter in colour and in weight!)
6. Dione and Luke’s Marriage*
7. Morning at the zoo with Mum and Dad and Rich – lots of fun walking around. Had to dodge many a child though. I couldn’t help but wonder that half the kids running around belonged behind bars like the animals...

*Dione and Luke’s Marriage
Their move to Qatar had been on the cards for months. It almost happened once, then didn’t, so when the process started again I thought it might just fade-out again. But, Luke did some phone interviews, then his company flew him out for meetings for a week... and he got the job. Dione has since also received a job offer at the same company!

The marriage needed to happen so that they could live together. So, Friday 9th January at the registry office it was; just D, Luke, Wesley, and myself.

After the signing of the papers we went up Mt Eden for Moet, cheese and crackers. Then it was off to Kermadec for the most incredible food of my life. D & L wanted to do ‘Idea of the Moment’ 6 course dinner, with matching wines. So from 7-11pm we were in taste-sensation-heaven!

We taxied back to their place for a glass of port (not like we needed more alcohol!). It was a fabulous day; really special.

Below is a mini montage of the day :)

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