12 January 2013

Time out

"What," I ask myself, "could be even more boring than yet another episode in John Jensen's version of The Perils of Pauline?"

Perhaps a few notes about what Sue and I did (and are doing) over the holidays.

Well, I have an excuse.  Sue is away this week (see below).  By constantly haranguing her, I have got her started on her own memoirs, and we have been doing one each every week-end.  So I can use her absence as an excuse to put mine off until next Saturday.

But I feel guilty not writing something - particularly having written nothing last Saturday! - so ...

Every year, on the second Sunday of January, a commemorative Mass is held at Totara Point on the Hokianga, to celebrate the first Mass there on 13 January, 1838 - and so it will be this year; but Sue and I will not be there.

We have gone every year for the past several years, staying with Dave and Jodi Van Boxel.  This year we could not.  Sue has her annual Opus Dei theology course to attend.  It started yesterday, Friday the 11th January.

Every year, also, Sue flies to Wellington to visit her friend Tina Maroney.  "Why not," I asked, "since we cannot go to the Hokianga, drive to Palmerston North, leave me there at Marko and Rachel's house, and you drive on to Wellington?"

So we did.  Marko Blagojevic worked for several years at the University of Auckland - and he and his wife Rachel became very close friends of me and Susan.  He now works in IT at Massey University.  On Tuesday the 2nd January, we drove down.  Slowing down moderately, Sue pushed me and my bags out of the car, and headed for Wellington.  Massey appears to be a magnet for Auckland University IT people, because another friend, Theang Ly, has just accepted a job (with Marko as his supervisor) there.  The seven of us (including Ly's wife Doreen and their two boys Eric and Jason) had a wonderful time together.  On Monday the 7th, Sue duly showed up at Marko's house, and we drove home - the western route, through Wanganui, Taumarunui, Otorohanga, and Te Kuiti (sneer, you North Americans, with names like Sequim, which they can't even pronounce properly, and Walla Walla, which Susan tells me is the town they liked so much, they named it twice).

I do detest these travelogues, as being the most contemptible form of communication, but I had to write something - really!  Sue is away this week.  I went back to work yesterday, Friday the 11th, and next week will be off on Tuesday and Thursday to deliver her papers.  May she return as planned on Thursday the 17th!  Saturday the 19th should see the resumption of your usual programme.

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