Describing New Zealand in less than 400 words.
If I had to describe New Zealand to any overseas visitor, in 400 words or less, this would be it.
The other day, on my drive home, I noticed that a neighbour had misplaced their house. After a few seconds of cognitive processing, I quickly detoured and headed around the block to check. My eyes sometimes play tricks on me and I suspected this was one of those times. I approached where my neighbour’s house used to be. I slowed down to ensure that there wasn’t some mirage in the evening sky. Nope, it was gone, the entire house. ‘How peculiar’ I thought to myself. ‘I’m sure it was there when I left for work this morning.’
After parking my car, I went for a walk. 30 seconds later I reached the empty lot. Not a soul was around. The entire house, foundations included had disappeared, evaporated in less than 24 hours. Left on the section, apart from a concrete pad and some rubble were two items. A BBQ and a picnic table. Thinking that David Blaine might be in town, and while checking that it wasn’t April the first, an elderly man walked past.
“Lovely evening” he said, looking through the vacant lot towards the setting sun. Clearly, he wasn’t as bothered by an entire house disappearing from his neighbourhood as I was.
“Are they rebuilding” I asked? Digging for information.
“Not sure, terrific view though” he added before continuing his walk.
Just then, two youths of about 16 years of age, carrying rugby boots around their neck ambled past me bouncing a rugby ball between them. At the same time, a Mitsubishi land cruiser filled with surfboards and slightly older youths whizzed past in the same direction. It became obvious that I was the only one concerned that an entire house had suddenly vanished, leaving only a BBQ and a picnic table.
I headed home. The old man was right, it was a splendid evening. Just then, my taste buds informed me that it was beer o’clock. I wondered if they’d mind if I used their picnic table. After all, it has a stunning view!