You know what I’m talking about. Michigan Avenue, 95th Street, Broadway, Paseo de la Reforma, Mass Ave, Queen Street, Rodeo Drive. Every town, or part of town you go to there is a typically main street or through way. North of Auckland, near a neighborhood called Sylvia Park there is a street named Mount Wellington Hwy. It’s just off the the main highway, SH 1, and there is a mall, and the American store, Martha’s Backyard, located along it.
This past Thanksgiving, Andrew and I decided to hit up the American store for some classic Turkey Day fixings. For us, that meant Stove-Top stuffing, primarily. Stuffing isn’t a really big thing in New Zealand, but it’s super traditional for us. (And it was a great hit with the out-of-towners we invited over as well.)
But alas, to my point. Here we were, driving up Mt Wellington Hwy, for maybe the tenth time, and I don’t know what changed, but I finally noticed the “Mount” part. Up ahead, you can see the big volcanic peak that is Mount Wellington or Maungarei as they say in Maori. “Why haven’t I noticed this before?” I wondered. “And is that a car driving up there?”
After we picked up our stuffing, we went right, instead of left, for not more than five minutes to the mountain for a quick pit stop before we turned around to head back home. It didn’t hurt that we didn’t have to walk up this one, and it was a stunning day outside!
We didn’t stay long, but we went for a short walk, pondered the merits of living in a city where there are volcanic peaks EVERYWHERE (this one last erupted only 10,000 years ago!) and soaked in the sun, reveling that it’s only just summer, as our family and friends back home were tweeting about the first snow.
I’m glad I looked up, and I’m glad we took a right on Mt Wellington Hwy. How frequently do I forget or miss opportunities to explore right in front of me? But I didn’t miss this one, not that time, and hopefully not next time either!