They also got their yearbooks back and spent quite some time running around and signing them. I got asked to sign many, and tried to always write something personal and meaningful. It wasn't that easy, actually, after the fifteenth child. Then Matt and I said our farewells to the class. He gave them some great advice for high school and beyond, which was to learn the new rules, then to unlearn them, then to relearn them. Then we gave them all hugs as they walked out the door for the last time. (I was very proud to get hugs from ALL my boys.) They went to the Hall for a farewell speech from the principal. After they were dismissed, it was the teachers' unhappy job to herd crying, hugging groups of girls off the campus.
Then we got to all hang out in the staff room from noon until the end of the school day eating food, drinking champagne, and exchanging Secret Santa Christmas presents.
Later that day, I met up with Dad! He was to meet his friend Barry at the airport, but they didn't find each other. But they both had my phone number so I arranged where to meet. I had been feeling ill since Monday - I always get sick at the end of term, as I push myself to the verge of exhaustion - and standing in the spitting rain with only a lIght jacket didn't help. We spent a while driving around with Barry, seeing their childhood haunts and grabbing dinner, after which I was totally ready for bed.
I woke up the next morning with a raging fever, and it hovered around 102 (and went as high as 104) for days. It wasn't the ideal way to welcome my father home, but what can you do? I moped around in bed and was somewhat grumpy, but did my best to help him find a car. He didn't need my internet searching skills in the end as an old friend put him in touch with someone.
Now we're in Piha and I'm on the mend. Still have a fever (it's been going on for 6 days and it seems to go up when I sleep and down when I am active, which is odd), but I can't stay in bed any longer. Yesterday, we met up with friends Gillian and Rustem at their batch. Rustem had a cello competition (which he won!) and is heading home tomorrow. So yesterday we spent the afternoon and evening together, walked along the beach, searched for quicksand (which we didn't find), and chased birds. Then Dad and I made our way to our to his friend Lyle's place where we'll be staying until we head down to Wellington.
Lyle and Jan are lovely, very warm and welcoming, easy to talk to. And the house is beautiful, built by Lyle, quite simple in structure but hung round with a multitude of paintings and other artwork. We're actually staying in a one-room (+ bathroom) structure next to the house which Lyle also built. The view's alright - you know, the typical green-clad mountains sloping down to black sand beaches. 😊