Beauty, then the Beast!

4 December 2018

I love great mornings where everyone is happy and everything goes to plan. Bugsy had a good twelve hour sleep, and woke up all cheery and gorgeous, and we messed around for a bit before she dressed and I showered. We all had breakfast together, during which she asked, very specifically, if she could have a suckie (a squeezy yoghurt) in her packed lunch when she goes to school, in her Paw Patrol lunch bag that she received for Christmas last year. Like I say, VERY specific!

After breakfast, it was time to say goodbye to our lovely apartment, and Cornelia played musical stepping stones on the wooden planks outside while Ian and I loaded up the car.

Although our final destination is Omarama tonight, we decided to do the hour drive to Glenorchy, voted by several lists to be the best in the world. Ian had followed it from the plane trip he’d taken yesterday and the pilot had recommended it, and it was definitely a worthwhile drive. Spectacular, as expected!

Initially, we were stuck behind a very annoying RV whose driver wouldn’t pull over to let the long queue of traffic behind him pass. Luckily there was one opportunity for Ian to overtake and he took it, and we could enjoy the view more than looking at the rear of an Apollo motorhome! (The driver was on his mobile phone 🙄)

It is so difficult to explain the scale of the mountains and waters, and it is unbelievably beautiful, and completely unspoilt by development.

We parked up right opposite the trading post, and ordered coffees and a large chocolate chip cookie for Cornelia which she had spied. She handed back nearly half of the cookie, saying she had had enough, which was a nice treat for me! However, that cookie destroyed her gorgeous mood and I’m not even sure what started it, but out of nowhere she snapped and turned into a four-year-old monster. Oh my goodness, she was screaming, scratching, yelling, and all sorts!! So she lost her Kindle for the day straightaway, which didn’t go down too well, to say the least. After several minutes of blood-curdling screams, I suggested to Ian that he go for a walk down to the water, and I ended up bundling her into the car and then sat in the front seat ignoring the raging screams of “I want it back noooooooow!” She went silent after a few minutes, then grabbed a handful of my hair and yanked it really hard. I bit my tongue, calmly telling her that you NEVER use violence as a way of expressing yourself, and she sat back and started sobbing, crying to Cowding “I’m so sorry, Cowding. But I don’t want you to do this to me.” I’m not quite sure what she meant, but her and Cowding reconciled and it seemed to start calming her a bit. Then she, quite normally, stood up, put her hand on my cheek and stroked it, apologising for each incident of scratching etc before explaining she’d been cross with Daddy and that’s what had started it, but unable to explain further. I don’t like her blaming Ian for this. He hadn’t done anything deserving of such hideous fury!

Anyway, apology accepted, Ian returned and she apologised to him too, and then it was my turn to have a quick walk to the river for a bit of peace and mindfulness! I stood for a while just breathing it all in. Another spectacular place, despite the furious four year old!

Back in the car, our peculiar daughter blurted out “Hens, rabbits and ocelots larger than 5lbs are an act of war! Luke is a boy with brownish blackish hair, a pink shirt and a yellow star on him and some shoes.” Apparently this is another character from Danger and Eggs. 🙄

We passed through Queenstown again, and our onward journey to Omarama was just as beautiful as our morning drive had been. Carpets of lupins lined the basin of the valleys we traversed, and the sun stayed out, brightening everything enormously, especially the snowy mountain peaks. We stopped off at “Roaring Megs” which is a hydro electric plant for lunch. Sounds worse than it was! We sat on the floor at the lookout point watching the waters rage past us, eating our sandwiches and congratulating ourselves on finding such an isolated spot. We spoke too soon for no more than a minute later, four cars arrived and we were joined by lots of people all wanting a photo from our spot! Cornelia had almost finished her sandwich, so we went back to the car and continued on our way.

We arrived at Omarama just before 17:00. Cornelia spotted the jumping pillow so was straight over there, while Ian and I unloaded the bags. He made a cup of tea, then joined Bugsy at the playground, and I made a start on the scrapbook again. I could see that the dark clouds were gathering and seemed to be getting closer, so I threw on my running kit and told Ian and Cornelia that I was heading out for twenty minutes before tea. In fact, by the time I’d asked for a route from reception and been to the loo, it was pouring with freezing rain. I went out anyway, and it was glorious!! I’d forgotten how much I love the sensation of running in the rain! I ended up going for 30 minutes, just because I was enjoying myself so much, and when I had finished, Ian and Cornelia were back in the unit, playing on stepping stones that she’d made from paper. I was soaking wet and freezing cold and completely joyful.

Once I’d changed into warm, dry clothes, I heated up our leftover bolognese from last night, and we scoffed it all down. I took Bugsy off for her shower while Ian popped to the nearby supermarket for beer. I read her stories in bed with her (her bunk is in our room) and then Ian told her a Mumfi story before she settled down for a cuddle. When her five minutes was up, she started to protest that she wanted longer, but was good as gold when I left the room, and she must’ve been asleep well before 20:00. Result!

I spent the next three hours cutting and sticking and writing, getting her scrapbook completely up to date. What an achievement that felt! I was so pleased to have done it at last. I went to bed feeling very content!

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