After an extended summer break in the South Island it is time to get stuck into another year.
When on holiday I love exploring new places. This holiday was no exception. We walked the Abel Tasman Track. Seeing is believing! Bark Bay and Te Puketea Bay will be part of the family vernacular forever. We made our first visit to Golden Bay with Wharariki Beach and Harwood's Hole atop Takaka Hill grabbing our imaginations. We cycled the Central Otago Rail Trail just managing to stay upright amidst the distractions of Poolburn and the Ida Valley and the Taieri River ... and we will be back to do them all again.
But what surprised me most was just how much it was the familiar that bred contentment.
We've lived in Southland. I still find that I support Otago/Southland sports teams. So much in the South is so familiar. Be it traveling over the Lindis Pass from the north OR racing up the side of Lake Pukaki to see the Cookie Monster up close and personal OR tasting everything in the Barker's store in Geraldine OR soaking up that view of the Wakatipu Basin from Coronet Peak OR swimming at St Bathans OR taking those bracing walks up to the glacial faces known as Fox and Franz Josef in shorts and jandals surrounded by tourists dressed to the hilt OR (on the way home) sleeping in the bay window of a 'fisherman's cabin' overlooking Lake Waikaremoana... I could never tire of experiencing any of these.
And yet in life and mission today it is 'the new' which receives so much focus. The pressure to be innovative. The need to be entrepreneurial. While I have no problem with this, I do wonder if we can lose sight of the value of the familiar. Building traditions. Making memories. Returning to sites. Favourite songs. Cherished texts. Valued friends. These breathe a peace and a joy and a contentment into our lives in a way that the 'the new' never can...
Let's pause before we treat the familiar with contempt.
nice chatting - again!