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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Saying Goodbye

Wairoa has been a wonderful little town to spend the last 14 months of our lives in. As we look back we see that what we have experienced here is intricately intertwined with the people we have met. There is a tradition here in New Zealand, a public “Thank you” for someone for what they have shared with you. In sharing our experiences we would like to take this opportunity to thank the many people who have made our year exceptional.

Ruth, Russell & Suzelle you have introduced us to the wilds of New Zealand, taking us tramping at Lake Waikeremoana being sure there was a shorter way back to the car if we went past these trees, through this field and into this river! You introduced us to Moko whom we visited over and over never tiring of the thrill of swimming with and touching a live, wild dolphin. You took us up in the helicopter experiencing the spectacular scenery from above. A New Year’s morning will never pass in which I will not remember sitting on the beach sharing a beautiful sunrise with you. You shared your family with us and have become ours. You mean the world to us.

Ian & Theresa, sharing communion with you met needs beyond imagination. Sitting and talking while drinking your fabulous mocacinos provided rest and intimate conversation.

Thank you Jill & Adrian for the opportunity to discover in the Yacht Club that sailing a boat is not as easy as it looks, and that being out there in a P Class boat faced with the challenge but also the freedom to move forward is rewarding.

Our fist bottle of wine was shared by Raffi after struggling to find a way to get the cork out of the bottle without a corkscrew! The year of working with you has been a blessing to Chad. He has enjoyed the camaraderie in and outside of work. Thank you for inspiring a group to take a tour of Hawke’s Bay cellars as well!

We discovered the art of raising two little lambs as Paul and Jossie walked us through each step of the way from bottles to recipes! Every time I sew I will have fond memories of the machine you gave us to borrow. Little did you know that it was something I had specifically prayed about before coming, as I wasn’t able to bring my own.

And speaking of sheep, thank you to Wendy and the spinning club who gave us the opportunity to sit in the evenings by the fire spinning our own yarn, then learning how to knit it into a hat.

The peacefulness of taking a jog around town, and getting motivated to do a “full body workout” at the Community Centre was much more enjoyable when joined by a friend. Thank you Stephanine. I am so glad we had the time to take our friendship beyond a jog to hanging out, going to Napier and lunch dates.

Brian and Christine, little do you know how a dream was fulfilled for me when you invited us to dance class. You happily shared your dance moves with us and every time we Cha, Cha Cha, we will remember you!

Gail, your love for rugby and the All Blacks spilled over into our experience of New Zealand. We so enjoyed getting to know you. Traveling to Wellington to see a live All Blacks game was the topping on the cake to finish the year.

Ron, Sue & Megan, thank you for sharing your batch in Mahia with us. Our first walk on the reef with you as you explained a wealth of knowledge on all the little critters left us exploring each time we returned. Chad loved the new adventure of diving for crayfish (lobster) and we all enjoyed eating it.

I could not believe after traveling so far from home that I was being invited to a Tupperware party, yet Val that bit of home was a reassurance I needed. I missed you when you passed on even though I only knew you for such a short time. Stew, despite Val’s illness and passing, you were a friend in addition to a neighbor. Thank you for sharing your pool with us. You taught me so much beyond gardening, but in serving as well.

Garafield and Rachel, our first exposure to you was hearing you preach in your little church. Your love for God was evident. I enjoyed tea with you Rachel and sharing promises of God. Garfield, I will never forget you and my Dad going back and forth between our houses as you shared yard tips with him! In such a short visit, a very meaningful bond was made. I was sorry to see you pass away shortly before we left. Rachel, you are in our prayers.

Lawrence and Marie I so enjoyed walking Joe to school. I watched Elena grow in compassion as she helped him each day. Your love for your Grandson is very beautiful.

We are better people because you have shared your lives with us and for that we thank you.

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