Monday 26th May

I was awake around 5am.
So decided to get up before the alarm and take my time getting ready before waking up the troops.
Woke them all around 6:45am.
They just had time to have breakfast, do final packing, while I packed up the car.
Then we waved goodbye to Elizabeth & Robin at 7:30am and drove around to meet up with Seb & Phoebe at Oxford Road.
Nicky drove us all to the airport.
Nathan & Mira took my car and headed into the city to go shopping.
But I discovered my sunglasses and Azzan’s man bag were still in the car so they swung by the airport to give them to me.
We left early because we were warned that the traffic into the city on a Monday morning was often bumper to bumper out to the Rangiora over bridge.
As it happened we missed the early rush and the later rush and made it in to the airport in less than half an hour.
We were trying to do an electronic check in when a flight attendant came to help us.
She was concerned that Seb should have a seat to fit him so she adjusted the seats and gave him an exit seat which left the three of us sitting back further and Phoebe had a spare seat to spread out on.
Worked well, plus she had a lovely lady from the Sounds sitting near her to chat with.

Nicky & Jasper decided to stay and hang out with us for a while.
We got a table in the food court and all went in different directions to satisfy the varying dietary wants and needs.
While we were sitting there I noticed the view seemed somewhat grey through the far windows.
Wondered if the windows were tinted, and then Seb came over and commented that it was snowing outside!!
The boys sat in the window and watched the flakes falling.
Then they sat near a plug and charged my phone for me.
But they couldn’t help themselves from playing on it as I found out later when I discovered a heap of selfies on it 🙂
Nicky had to leave as her parking ticket was expired so we cruised through immigration and wandered to the departure lounge.
We met my cousin Steve as we were queuing, on the same flight, so we were able to have a few minutes to talk which was lovely.
The flight to Auckland went smoothly.
Views of the Southern Alps were spectacular as they are covered with snow now.
Didn’t have to worry about our bags as they were consigned directly through to Perth.
We chatted with Steve again and then caught the free bus over to International and meandered our way to the Departure area.
We had time for some more food.
The guys were concerned they wouldn’t get enough on the plane!!
I was feeling a bit squidgy so just had a mochaccino, but it made me feel worse :-/

We were rather pleased to find that we were all seated in the same row when we boarded.
I knew Seb & Phoebe were to be in the bassinet row with Sapphire but was expecting for Azzan & I to be quite a way behind them.
However we were just across the aisle so were able to take Sapphie a few times to ease the load somewhat.
It was a bit of a giggle though, she was too long for the bassinet so that was a bit of a waste of space!!

I made the most of the time on board and watched two movies I have been wanting to see for a while now.
Saving Mr Banks’ was excellent.
Intense and emotionally absorbing.
Loved it through the tears.
’12 Years a Slave’ was also very intense.
And extremely moving.

I had a very interesting companion in the seat between me and the aisle.
He slept most of the way, but we chatted whenever the food came around.
He was a NZ marine engineer flying into work at Barrow Island.
He also had an insatiable appetite so was very happy to clean up all the food that Azzan & I couldn’t manage to eat!!
We had a few laughs – fun 🙂

We landed right on schedule, but it took ages to retrieve our bags and then get through immigration.
They cleared us pretty quickly – most handy having baby and Azzan with us as they shove families through quite fast.
I was just turning on my phone to message Jesika when we walked out into the airport and there she was – waiting to greet us all with open arms and big hugs 🙂
Evan was waiting further away at a free parking area.
It took ages to get the rental car sorted.
Even though it was me that picked up the phone to call for an attendant to the rental booth once she arrived I got pipped at the post by a very large extended Singaporian Chinese family who barged in front of me :-/
I was so tired by this point.
The others went off to find fresh air and toilets etc while I waited.
We eventually got sorted and made our way out to find our car and meet up with Evan.
Jesika drove me & Azzan in the rental and Evan took the other three in their car.
Its close on an hours drive south to Rockingham.
We beat them back because they took a different route.
Lovely to be greeted by Murray & Hazel.
They had only just purchased this house when I was last over so I had not yet seen it.
We sat around talking and eating for a while.
Seb enjoyed discovering the contents of Uncle Murray’s man shed 😉
Sapphie was just happy to not be travelling.
She had done incredibly well but finally packed it in, so Phoebe gave her a shower and tucked her into bed.
The 4 hour time difference was telling on me though as I was nodding off.
So packed myself off to bed and left the others to talk longer.

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