Wednesday was a day for catching up with friends and making new ones.
Thirty years ago I was young and silly and backpacking around Europe as Kiwis do and while in a youth hostel in France I asked a young Canadian girl if she would mind swapping my top bunk for her bottom one. That is my friend Kathleen who I’m staying with now...all these years later. We’ve been buddies ever since, visiting each other and I was even her bridesmaid.
Another Canadian that day was Margaret, and yesterday we caught up again, having lunch at a lovely restaurant in Pt Grey – suburb of Vancouver. We chatted for hours, wondering where the years have gone, talking about the directions our lives have gone. It was a lovely few hours, one we do every few years, when the opportunity arises and we visit each other’s shores.
Then last night, Neil and I had the opportunity to make some new friends. As many of our Kiwi mates will know, Neil is a vintage car enthusiast. Well last night we drove about an hour eastwards to Surrey, over the Simon Fraser Bridge which is 2-3 times as high as the Auckland Harbour Bridge and rises to a peak then you descent very steeply – it is a kind of suspension bridge with large wires and although rather a grand and an architectural and engineering masterpiece, it did not inspire confidence in me. Give me the older concrete sturdy looking bridges any day. However, we made it to the Firemen’s Hall on 144th Street, Surrey and were warmly welcomed by the Fraser Valley Ford V8 Club for their monthly meeting. Lots of inspiring things going on. Planning runs months in advance, a huge picnic coming up in July, t-shirts and jackets with club insignia on them and not to forget the coffee and tea and muffins at the end of the evening. It was a lovely time and we were given lots of advice on different places to see and do on our proposed route southwards.
We got back home – and yes via the bridge, but were amazed at one part of the freeway that had no lights on it and it was another scary driving experience. But we made it home safely to bed...ready to start another day of playing tourist.
Another fun thing...Pinkie found an accomplice. A dress store called Pinky Clothing. Isn’t it nice she isn’t alone in the pink world!
Jane and the whanau.