i wish i could accurately share what life is like here, but as with all totally epic experiences, it can't really be described...only felt.
it feels like coming home as shannon so perfectly put it. i feel like i am home here. and to be quite honest... i don't want to leave.
but don't worry dad, don't worry john, dev. i know i can't stay. i love you all too much.
everyday we have some new adventure. we catch most of the food we eat from the ocean. i have learned how to dive for abalone and then clean and cook them. i also know how to set lines and gut a shark.... and then prepare it for breakfast. i've learned all the best tidepools to get mussels out of. tonight we go pig hunting.... in other words i am becoming eli.
everyday there are new people flung from the world over into the holiday camp. so there is always a new language to learn. turns out the word for butterfly is universally beautiful.. although the consensus is that it's much prettier with a kiwi accent than an american accent. everyone is constantly mocking my accent. "ferrrrr." says willow and laughs.
everyday i work hard on some new camp-enhancing project. yesterday i spent almost all day in the woods, clearing and cleaning them out for the future coffee cart that will be put there. i would work until i couldn't move anymore, then climb a tree, rest, repeat. before this i was mostly planting flax. i have become proficient with a machete, a spade and i'm working on a chainsaw.
basically i'm always dirty and sweaty. it's awesome.
everyday i explore some new part of this place. there are beaches, islands, tidepools where you can swim with baby seals. there are cliff-top hikes and rolling green hills everywhere. there are forests of manuka and other native brush just stuffed with cicadas. there are eels and horses and peacocks and fish of all kinds and loons and hawks and bell birds by the dozen. but there are no sand flies! paradise!
no adventure is deemed too dangerous for a girl out here and as a result i am very slowly being molded into a wild pirate. i have never enjoyed anything so much in my life. i am constantly testing my skills, fitness, and bravery. i am passing each test. i am crackling with happiness. i have everything i could want or need....
except you. xo