The family and I have just returned from a road trip - the object of which was to collect my father's ashes from the funeral home in Auckland and scatter them where my mother's ashes are placed in Taupo.
Sounds simple huh? But nothing with my family is ever simple - particularly when there are animals to consider (many thanks to Kerry for house and animal sitting) and people to manage.
Samantha drove up to us from Wellington and together with Jade and Jacky we set off initially for Hamilton and a visit to Adam's place.
Keegan, of course, lives in Auckland - hence his no appearance in the photo taken in Adam's front yard. We handed over the oud and other gifts from Doha and collected a CD of Adam's music. It's a collection of the tracks he sends us regularly and a top effort it is too. I do find his tribute to his grandad (Graham N Purdy R.I.P.) very affecting. He also gave me a copy of a CD by Emancipator - I have no idea who or what they are but it is also a superb collection of trip hop instrumentals.
Next it was Keegan's turn in the spotlight as we entered Auckland. Again we handed over the Doha gifts and enjoyed a catch-up. Keegan gave us a lift to the ferry buildings where we needed to catch a ride to Waiheke Island. We spent the night at Brian's fantastic house on the island with Michelle and Gavin also joining us.
This is all pretty rare really. Given the geography it is sometimes a real hike to see family members. Collecting dad's ashes had the bonus of meaning all these reunions were possible.
The next day was spent driving Jacky, Jade, and Samantha down to Taupo to join Ross, Lynda, and Scott in scattering the ashes in the appropriate place.
It was a feeling of completing a journey that began with dad's stroke last August, rather than any kind of closure. The responsibility to rejoin our parents symbolically was ours to undertake and I am very proud that we have achieved this. I certainly feel a large sense of fulfillment knowing that we have reunited them after 28 years.
Now back in Stratford it is possible to start moving forward again and entering a new phase of our lives.
I'm also hoping to regain energy in the blog. I feel like I've been sleepwalking through entries a little since returning to NZ.
Ka kite ano/ till next time, inshallah -
Love and peace - Wozza