Beauty they say is on your back doorstep. As I write, I am above the clouds on a Bombardier bound for New Plymouth. I’ve never been there before and I feel like a kid going to OZ. Forty-three years of living in this country and I’ve never been to the Taranaki - it’s ridiculous.
As the plane ascends out of Wellington I look down as we pass over the Cake Tin. I marvel at the majestic hills, harbour and coastline. I think of the stories of Maui - the notion of a great fish that was bashed and sledged into the shapes that form our magnificent landscape.
As a kid, I suffered countless family road trips. I hated long car journeys and my desperate imagination conjured wishful thoughts of giant-sized stilts. In my dreams I would plant my crutches down halfway around Whakatane and swing myself all the way to Whangaparaoa. I’d soar over Mt Ruapehu and Lake Taupo and skip straight over the long windy gorge.
A funny thought crosses my mind. Maybe my family feel the same way about shopping as I once did about those car trips. I wonder if they have their own magic stilts thoughts of being able to skip through all my browsing, indecision, assessment, pondering, and more to the point, not having to stand through long conversations with everyone I bump into. But my shopping habits are a whole other story...
Flying is quicker than driving but even so, it brings it's own set of fears and emotions. You give up so much control when you step on a plane: your life is literally in someone else's hands. There is a well known phenomenon too, of feeling emotional when you're high in the sky.
Quite often when you get on board a plane you’re leaving something or someone behind. Maybe you just had the best weekend you’ve ever had, or perhaps you've just completed a huge work project. Maybe you caught up with a friend you haven't seen in ages, or maybe you just left the life you knew behind, to start a new job or relationship.
Being on a plane, disconnected from wifi, surrounded by strangers in a confined space and free from our usual distractions, we tend to focus more inwardly - on the people in our lives and our feelings towards them.
Immediately now I'm motivated to start a new document headed "My Christmas Gift List". The weekend is off to an unexpectedly productive start. Those "Brave and True" cufflinks and the Orbitkey - yes - I know who needs those, tick! The wooden light houses, triple tick - mental note to put three aside when I get home. The Limoncello, perfect for my friend who has been in the Bay of Islands...another note to self to print off the recipe for that cocktail...yes it's high time I got my own gifts organised.
Well that's me off on a tangent now. They say the best view comes after the biggest climb. Maybe everyone should get on board an airplane to see things more clearly.
Happy gift giving,
Tess and the Team