Friday, 18 July 2014

Vacation

Still alive, still in New Zealand. Everything is well apart from an annoyingly lingering cold. Seriously, how much mucus is it possible for one body to produce? New Zealand in midwinter is cold, in an unexpected way. The temperature isn't all that low, usually lying somewhere between 5 and 15 degrees it's more like Nordic spring or autumn. And although I see signs of people falling into winter depression around me, the light levels are higher than what I'm used to, so the darkness doesn't faze me. 

What bothers me is that it's cold indoors. Even with multiple layers of clothing one is left shivering without people to snuggle up against. This is just wrong! I know it's kind of impolite to be all "this is how we civilised people do things better than you barbaric foreigners" when visiting another country, but seriously kiwis. Did you know that double-glass windows is a thing? That insulation is pretty useful, and that building houses with radiators placed under the windows is actually rather clever when it comes to heat-preservation? Have you noticed that while you may not get much snow, temperatures actually tend to get quite low in your country in wintertime? That building more expensive but warm houses could be very well-spent money?

Oh well, end of rant. In a couple of weeks I'll have more heat than I can handle, going back to pretty much the height of the Swedish summer. In the meantime I'm visiting Dunedin and Auckland again, to hang out with awesome people. Roleplaying, larping, playing boardgames, swordfighting, going to interesting shows and museums, snuggling. Going for some sightseeing walks as far as I have the energy for it. An excellent way of spending four weeks' vacation in this lovely country, I'd say. There are still places I'd like to visit and mountains I'd like to climb, but that will have to wait for the future, I think. The flu messed up my physical energy levels pretty badly, and moneywise I'm almost broke. But I'm not sad about that; I am enjoying myself immensely.

I'll be sad to leave, but that's the way it has to be for now. I'm happy and grateful for all the wonderful memories of places and people and moments and adventures I will take with me. 

The sun sets behind the hills of Dunedin.

Love and vacation,
Winterdragon

Friday, 4 July 2014

Bittersweet endings

University is out for the semester. Courses are over and done, whether I passed my finals or not. Results won't be brilliant, but hopefully good enough. I gave up the high-grade-chasing game a long time ago, since I really quite enjoy having spare time. There are so overwhelmingly many fun things to fill it with.

Moved out of my student room this week, and in a few days I will be leaving this place which has been my home for the past half year. The beautiful, shaken, construction site of a city called Christchurch. I love it to bits, along with all the lovely people I've made friends with here. 

The plague I've been down with for the past few weeks is giving way at last, and I feel my energy gradually returning. Joy and rejoicing! It makes such a difference that I realise I shouldn't be taking my health for granted. If you haven't got your health you haven't got anything, indeed.

I'm spending this last week here hanging out with awesome people. Roleplaying, boardgaming, swordfighting, movie-watching, snuggling, making out, partying, exploring. All those things I love so much and that make me feel like I belong. This is home now.

But I'll soon be pulling up the roots I've grown here and go back to where I came from. It hurts. It always hurts to leave someone or someplace you've gotten attached to. Because it's scary. I'm having nightmares about going back to Sweden only to find that the place has changed completely and that no-one remembers me anymore. The same fears are creeping up on me regarding New Zealand. That I will be forgotten as soon as I leave and that the friendships with people I've connected with will fade to nothing before long.

But that's the risk in any situation, not only for travel. Nothing lasts forever, and in many cases that is much more of a blessing than a curse. Life itself is fragile and will pass, so either nothing or everything will have been worthwhile. I'm going to go with the latter. I don't want fear of loss stopping me from enjoying life or connecting with people, because that's no way to live. Every moment is worth experiencing for its own sake, regardless of any possible prices of pain. I've found that the joy gained is so much greater.

Besides, since there are never any guarantees for anything, there is plenty of room for hope of future re-meetings. No expectations, for those quench the soul. Just hope.

Love and endings,
Winterdragon