And so, this morning, for the first time in a year and a half, I was woken up not by screaming and jumping kids, not by the sound of a piano being practiced or a drum kit being pounded on. Or even by the sound of the landlord’s car leaving for work. This morning was different. There was the gentle light of the new morning sun, the distant cockle-doodle-doo of a neighbor’s rooster, and the jingle-belled walking motorboat alarm clock of one of the new kittens.
So let me back up a bit and explain how all of this has come to be. My partner (now fiance!) E’s parents live predominantly in Taiwan. But they like to come to new Zealand on their holidays. And they wish to retire down here. And so they not too long ago purchased their dream retirement home up on the bluffs looking out over Lucas Creek.
The only downside for them is, they are not retired yet! And they won’t be for some time! So they needed somebody to stay in the house and keep an eye on it for them while they are in Taiwan. And this is where we come in. So for the next four years or so, we will be living in this ginormous house for the year, and only sharing it with others when his parents come for visits, holidays, or conferences.
Pretty sweet, yeah? It’s a 5 bedroom house with 3.5 baths, a rumpus room, two car garage, extensive gardens (well extensive by my standards), surrounded by native bush and looking out over some amazing views. We can see parts of Albany, Lucas Creek, and the Waitakeres. And off in the far distance I am still able to see the Sky Tower peeking out above the tree line.
Last night was our first night sleeping here, and the nighttime views were just as amazing. Off in the distance you could see the glow of the Sky Tower, with the white fuzzy haze of the light pollution of the CBD all around it. And then the sparkling orange lights of all the street lamps littering that part of the shore, like a thousand and ten stationery fireflies. The moon barely glowing on the Creek, and even with all that civilization seemingly so very close, there was still enough darkness to look up into the sky and count the stars, to cuddle on the top balcony and feel the wind and listen to the hoot owl in the night.
And then to lay down on our mattress (we were too tired to be bothered putting the bed together yet) and listen to the absolute silence of the house. The large echoing house. and the gentle sound of the wind chimes that hang just outside of our bedroom window. I don’t think I ever had a more peaceful night’s sleep.
Of course that was disturbed at 6am by the walking alarm clocks. Because we live out in the bush, E’s mom has decide that mice might be a problem. And as such, we need cats. So we have two cats. They are ginger stripes and so cute! One of them is 5 months, the other is 4 months. Their names are Happy and Lucky, although I could not at this instance tell you which is which. We seem to be referring to them as “Cat 1” or “Red Cat” and “Cat 2” or “Blue Cat”, due to their size, age, and the color of their collars.
Blue cat was the one who came and woke me up this morning. With his jingle bells around his neck (so that he can scare off any native birds that he might decide to hunt), and his walking motorboat of a purr. I have never met a cat with such a loud purr who is able to sustain that purr while moving. But he is!
So this is just a taste of what is going on! I think there might be a new section added to the blog called “Tales of May” all about living with E’s mom for the next few months and how our different language skills may come to play. But I’ll have to think about that one still. In the meantime, I will give you this picture, and say to you, “Good Morning, World”