Thursday, 16 January 2014

Christmas & New Year's 2013

I’ve been back at work for two weeks and it has been the Longest. Two. Weeks. Ever. After an amazing few weeks off, I did not look forward to returning to the office last Monday. This year for Christmas was spent much differently than last (last year we went on a North Island road trip with our good friend Chris from Canada) but definitely no less fun.
I unfortunately had to work until midday Christmas Eve. We were graciously invited to spend Christmas Day with Kevin’s handsome colleague Bunny and his delightful family in Days Bay, Eastbourne. The Mossmans were so welcoming in adopting us as orphans for a delicious Christmas lunch followed by wharf jumps into the ocean (I love Christmas in summertime!). Christmas Day ended up being an absolute stunner amidst the pretty average weather we had been seeing.
Bunny, Kevin, & I on Christmas Day
Kevin and I then whisked back home to Skype both our families, say our Merry Christmases, and then drove over to have traditional North American Christmas dinner with another colleague of Kevin’s and our good friends Jason and Kellie. To sum up our Christmas Day 2013, I can say we had amazing company and way too much food!
On Boxing Day, we loaded up Sophia and drove to Daisy Bank Farm in Martinborough to help set up La De Da, a music festival that Bunny’s brother puts on each year. The crew consisted of about 15-20 friends and friends of friends, most of who have worked at the festival each year. We spent four days building fences, scrimming (a word that was not previously in my vocabulary), building a cafe, setting up signs, driving quads (my first time!), etcetera, etcetera. I discovered that manual labour is hard. And that I would make a terrible construction worker.
View of La De Da from the top of the hill.
Papa Sam working hard behind the scenes.
Looking good boys!

Our entire stay was catered by the head chef at Pravda and we got to experience the whole “backstage” experience during the festival. Kevin and I have been to a ton of festivals but this was our first time behind-the-scenes. We worked in the mornings of the 30th (directing traffic) and 31st (cleaning out A$AP Rocky’s dressing room—yup, you heard that right), but were able to enjoy the afternoons and evenings of the festival. The highlights for me were definitely Flume, Opiuo, and Dead Prez (dream come true!).

Crew camping - home sweet home!
I'm not allowed to say who this is playing on a quad before going on stage. Take a wild guess.

Panoramic view of La De Da from crew camping.
We spent the 1st and 2nd January taking down everything we put up. This process is much quicker. We had a giant bonfire and burned a bunch of old materials, and sorted out all the confiscated liquor that people tried to sneak into the festival (this probably equated to over a tonne of unopened alcohol). We headed home in the evening of the 2nd and I had never been so happy to see my own bed! The weather in Wellington for the last three days of our holidays was awful, so I felt zero guilt about spending most of that time in bed catching up on my guilty-pleasure TV series (I won’t confess which ones).
Tonight, we head off to Taumarunui with 30 friends for a three-day canoe trip down the Wanganui river for Wellington Anniversary long weekend! Crossing my fingers for sunshine!

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