Ellie in Welly III

Dear Future Ellie,

I’m writing this from your flat with no opening windows. You’re drinking a cup of Yorkshire Tea, listening to SG Lewis and Bon Iver. In the past half hour the weather has changed from hail to sun, to wind and then repeat. Two of your flatmates are with you. You’re still in your pyjamas, despite it being one in the afternoon.

As I’m sure you know, you started writing this little old blog with the mindset of keeping your family up to date with your travels, though admittedly up to date was a very ambitious goal.

However, this post is written in mind for you. You stopped keeping a diary when you arrived in Wellington, fearing the mundane would erode the love of writing you had rediscovered whilst travelling. I’m writing this for you trying to remember some favourite moments from your time in Wellington. You love it here, I’m sure you’ll never forget that, but I’m worried you might forget some of the little, and not so little, things.

This list is from November 2015- September 2016. I may write you another one in a few months. The moments are in no particular order, in both the chronological sense and preference.

  1. The time you were at Heavens Pizza on Cuba Street. You were with a bunch of friends and you were all laughing so hard that the staff gave you all free dessert. Writing about this just now made you laugh again and you’re still smiling at the memory of it
  2. Stargazing at the Red Rocks
  3. Returning to the Red Rocks again with E, strolling again and getting to admire the place in the day
  4. Meeting HS at the airport
  5. Eating sushi on the waterfront with HS
  6. Walking on the waterfront, watching the ocean. You love it when the piano is out
  7. How lucky you feel with your view from work. You get to watch the sky change from blue to pink and fade to black, with the ocean and the surrounding mountains on a regular basis
  8. Having one of your uni flatmate’s around and showing them the Botanical Gardens
  9. Dancing around your flat with E to Holiday by Dizzee Rascal and various Vengaboys song, being in near darkness apart from the oven light. Your flatmates walked in and found you doing this more than once
  10. When you and E get the flat to yourselves, drink cups of tea whilst talking about anything and everything. You feel at home with her
  11. Working at a fastfood stall at ACDC, meeting H, and making the best out of having to watch chips all evening. Yes, you did wear a hairnet
  12. Hearing the choir perform while temping at the level four café in Te Papa
  13. Sitting in Civic Square with M listening and watching a 360° performance with Orchestra Wellington and Orpheus Choir 
  14. Showing your two old uni friends the city, and getting to see it through new eyes
  15. Going to Dirty Little Secret, the rooftop bar on Courtenay Place
  16. You love the number of vintage and record shops here but rarely have enough money to afford anything from them. You loved the birthday dress you got from Thrift for $35
  17. Having Pimms on New Year’s Day on a gloriously sunny day with A at St John’s
  18. Evenings at Foxglove (these could make a list of themselves) spent drinking after work. There is always so much laughter. And the odd shot. Or several. The Arctic Monkeys get played a lot. You sing along, depending how much rum and ginger ales you’ve had
  19. Hiding in M’s room having moved around all her possessions and putting random items from the flat into it. Including a traffic cone and the kitchen bin
  20. The night in New Town with M and R. You were in their friend’s back garden with stars and the city lights, then you all went to  watch one of their friend’s band perform at Moon Bar
  21. Karaoke with your old GM – performing Dance Wiv Me by Dizzee Rascal (I’m sorry, but not that sorry, he’s had multiple mentions in this list)
  22. Trying Mount Vic Chips / the deep fried brie. Hot damn that brie
  23. Catching up with J from your SE Asia tour and walking around Te Papa
  24. Kaitoke Regional Park and wandering through the forest by yourself. It felt like you were in a fairy tale. The reason you made all the effort go was because Rivendell was filmed there. You nerded out pretty hard at that part
  25. Lyall Bay with E and C
  26. Going to the Wellington Food and Wine Festival with A, B and S
  27. Discovering a love of Malaysian food at Aunty Mena’s
  28. Getting the care package from uni friends, delivered and thought of by the wonderful HS
  29. February, M and O – realising what all the fuss what about
  30. The Zealandia day trip with E, M and HS
  31. Swimming out to a platform on Oriental Bay
  32. The glorious afternoon spent on Somes Island with E
  33. The time when you finished a shift with T, then two guys got talking to you both and bought the two of you a lot of Moët and Te Hana (A quick tagent: Te Hana is the sparkling wine B, the chef, loves to get drunk off with fantastic results)
  34. Festive baking. You made rocky road, cookies and also paid $16 for a gingerbread, which was tasted terrible and was aggressively underwhelming. You and your friends iced Shit House on it. Michael Bublé was playing throughout. A cried, obviously, when she walked in after work to find the prep ready with his music playing
  35. The short film festival with A & B – you felt pretty cultured and it was one of the first times you realised how, for want a better word, cool Wellington is
  36. The Library cocktails, particularly the Apple Pie Daiquiri
  37. The free concert at the Botanical Garden with fairy lights and bubble machines in the trees
  38. Getting kicked out of a EA with O and laughing the entire walk home
  39. Going for brunch, because Wellington has so many incredible options. You like Fidel’s and Coffee Hangar the best. Your favourite so far has been the Halloumi salad (with bacon) with a Mimosa you had at Fidel’s for your birthday, you were there with E
  40. The guy who messaged you telling you that you’re not the soulmate he wanted to spend the rest of his life with. You’d been on one date and met in a club. You shared and laughed at this text. A lot.
  41. Cooking a roast dinner with your flatmates
  42. You got locked out of your flat for an hour. The neighbors rescued you at 4am and you enjoyed their hospitality. They had a cone in their flat, too
  43. Watching the Christmas Parade, drinking a toffee nut latte with A, feeling unbelievably content that everything had come together

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