New Zealand Calling

After months of not writing a blog, I got up last Friday (04/04) fully intending that this would be the first day of many blogs.

I have had a lovely few months.  We had a holiday at the beginning of the year away from the stresses of an architect building a home for himself; then we spent 5 weeks travelling around the country with my sister from England and sharing with her some of my favourite places in this beautiful land; then more friends from overseas.  We had a few days in Australia visiting 4 artists in their studios and then a trip to Hobart in Tasmania to visit MONA – Museum of Old and New Art.  What an exciting time that was and what an amazing building.  Here’s the link. Please take a look you will hardly believe what has been achieved here.

In February we moved house although the new house isn’t ready to move into and following a series of minor (or maybe major) disasters it won’t be ready for another two or three months so we are going to Europe for three months.  We are busy planning our trip with friends in Italy with whom we shall stay and then go to Spain with them.  How exciting!


But the best-laid plans – on Friday (04/04) we heard that there had been a major fire in a storage facility in Wellington and yes, all my worldly goods were stored in that facility.  Panic ensued and nothing else was thought of for the rest of the day.  However, the next day we went to the site and discussed the situation with the General Manager and the Fire Chief.  We were told there would be water and smoke damage but both thought it would be minimal.

So there followed a week of waiting to be told that we could go onto the site; meeting with removal men to determine where the soggy goods would be stored; going to the new facility and sorting out what had to be removed immediately – boxes that disintegrated as they were lifted.  These mainly held linen and scarves – easily washed so no real problem – and shoes.  This was a different matter as they all had to be stuffed with newspaper and dried at the fire.

Of real concern though was the artwork, prints etc.  Fortunately, my daughter has just bought a house with a self-contained apartment attached.  So we moved the pictures into that and set the dehumidifier.  It looks as if we have been really lucky.

Books, photos and papers were in plastic storage bins so again we have been very lucky.  The photos and letters were what I was most concerned about.  Everything else is just stuff.

And now we are told that the fire was arson.  The mind boggles at how anybody could do something like this.  All week we have heard terrible stories of people having lost everything.  CCTV coverage shows a man entering the facility with what looks like a drum of petrol.  Let’s hope they get this man quickly.


28 responses to “New Zealand Calling

  1. So very good to hear from you. I was just thinking about you the other day and wondering how your life was going. Other than the fire (which as awful) it sounds like things are going swimmingly. We are still working on our plans to move to Spain before the end of the year. I plan to put things in storage as well, I will be sure to put pictures and precious papers in plastic storage bins as well. All the best, Darlene

    • And be sure to insure everything. Many of those who suffered badly had no insurance on their goods.
      Hope your move to Spain goes well but there will be many more blogs from you before the end of the year, so we will know how you are doing.

  2. So happy to see you back, and now you’re off again.
    I don’t know how you’re able to write a post like his that seems full of disasters and yet reads so calmly. had most people suffered these mishaps there would be weeping, wailing and gnashing of teeth, and that’s just from me.
    Hopefully when you return again the new house will be ready, the water damaged property all nicely dried and you’ll be ready once again to regale us with your adventures.
    xxx Huge Hugs xxx

    • Hi David. I was thinking of you and your Julia the other day and wondering how you are really getting along. I read your blogs and they are amusing but..
      As for me, the first day I was in despair thinking that all was lost, but I have really been so lucky. Those things that can’t be replaced are safe and everything else is just stuff.
      Hugs from this side of the world. xxxx

  3. Fire can be so pretty it’s such a shame it leaves such devastation in its wake.
    My blogging and visiting have both been a bit sparse lately, I must pull my finger out and get back into the swing of things.
    Looking forward to your trips too. 🙂

  4. Glad to hear that you will be able to save most of your belongings and it sounds as though you have managed to save the letters and photos, xx

    • Good to hear from you cousin. Hope your tests are good.
      We quickly come to realise that letters and photos are what are important.
      All else is just stuff. xxx

  5. Back to Italy, eh? You’re getting to be a regular world traveler.

  6. Doesn’t it make your blood run cold to think of losing letters and photos? I’m relieved for you that most things are ok and your story has a happy ending, but share your perplexity as to how anyone would want to do such a thing. Lovely to hear how you are getting on, and that on the whole life is good! Many more happy adventures 😀

    • Hi Cat. Yes life is good for me but not so for those others who lost everything in the fire. Lots of pretty upset people venting their fury at the owners of the facility when really there’s only the arsonist to blame.

  7. Oh, Judith, I was wondering how you were doing! Thanks for the update. Enjoy your trip. Stay safe! Cheers!

  8. Wow, you’ve had a busy few months! But, goodness, that fire situation could have been a disaster. I can’t imagine how that must have concerned you when you still didn’t know what the damage would be. Thank God you didn’t lose everything. But, ARSON!? God, that’s dreadful!

    Hugs from Ecuador,

    • Thanks Kathy. While I haven’t been blogging for the past few months I have been reading lots of my favourite bloggers including you.
      Hope you and Sarah are both well – I am beginning to understand your earlier comment about living with an architect. Guess there has to be some compromise on each side.
      Hugs from the other side of the world.
      Judith xxx

  9. My, you have been busy! So glad to hear your truly precious items weren’t damaged. Your upcoming trip sounds exciting. That is some museum!

  10. What an ordeal, so glad you were able to salvage most of your items. Hope you have a lovely trip!

  11. 5 weeks with your sister from England travelling around the country with her. I bet you had a lovely time with her and also with the following visitors from overseas. I find it always exciting to show overseas visitors some of the beautiful spots here in Australia. With the delay in the finishing of your new home the good thing is that you get some more travelling out of it. I am looking forward to see your next posts about your stay in Europe. This time you are going to have someone with you to share all these experiences with. How wonderful! So much to enjoy. Your writing shows you count yourself very lucky. And it is also very lucky that you were able to save your photos and letters. My best wishes are with you, Judith, for more very enjoyable months ahead and then a lovely home-coming to New Zealand! 🙂

  12. How lovely to hear from you and your exciting plans via Italy and Spain. How horrid to hear about the fire, I’m sure you had some rather anxious moments. How someone can do something so callous is beyond understanding. Be well and have fun!

    • Hello Joss. I have been following your travels and adventures around France. You must be half way through your ‘running away’ year and from what you tell us you are having a great time. Take care and enjoy the spring in Europe.

  13. I need to tell everyone I am the Sister who came to visit you in you wonderful cointry and I tell everyone I was Seduced by the wonderful scenery and people. THANK YOU for making my visit so wonderful was talking to Mr K the other night told him about the floor in you new house and he said you should of had him lay it lol xx

  14. Pingback: A Year In The Life of … | I choose how I will spend the rest of my life

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