"I remember thinking at this exact moment how wonderful it is to be with your sister and mum. This was the first time we had gone away just us three and we kept on saying how lovely it was sitting with the sun on our backs and being happy together."
When I met up with my mum in London a couple of years ago, we visited the Tower of London, Madame Tussauds, the Thames River and more. One day, when we were making our way up to the Greenwich timeline, I looked over the gorgeous fields and hills and thought to myself that I need to explore my own country. At the time, being an 18 year old, I had only been to a few cities in the upper North Island and Christchurch. I was so excited to explore other countries that I forgot about the beautiful country I lived in. Overseas, people would tell me about their amazing adventures in New Zealand, and I felt a bit silly when I responded that I had not yet explored these places in my own country. “Surely you have visited your own capital city?” “Ah, nope I haven’t”. I suppose I didn’t have anyone living there to visit, and no reason to go.
When I arrived home from being overseas for 6 months, my older sister suggested that we should go on a girls’ trip. We brainstormed a few ideas and the one we all agreed on straight away was going to Wellington to see the World of Wearable Arts show. We had a lovely weekend walking along the waterfront, and the weather was perfect (no wind at all). We had to laugh when one night we were walking (with our groceries) along the street to look for a place to stop in for a hot chocolate. We finally found a café still open, but we were asked to sit at the table nearest the door and they would come back with the menu. We looked up and saw some stairs leading up to the main part of the restaurant and wondered why they hadn’t offered us to sit up there. We then had a look at the menu and realized we were at ‘Pravda’ Simon Gault’s restaurant; we couldn’t stop laughing because we were in our ‘casual’ attire with our plastic bags in a very fancy restaurant.
The WOW show was a great time with lots of laughs. But the best part of being in Wellington and exploring places was the cable car ride and sitting on this bench overlooking Wellington. What an amazing view this was! We packed a picnic lunch and just sat there looking at this view for so long. It was so relaxing and having the best company made it even better. I remember thinking at this exact moment how wonderful it is to be with your sister and mum. This was the first time we had gone away just us three and we kept on saying how lovely it was sitting with the sun on our backs and being happy together.
It is so important to keep a close relationship with your family and for me this is especially with my mum. We have become so much closer over these last couple of years and it’s about making time for each other and being interested in her hobbies. Growing up as a teenager, you take your mum for granted but it’s not until you grow up and realize how important and special they are to you. Get to know their past, get their old photos out and enjoy your time together, you may even discover how very similar you both are! It made me think about exploring more places in New Zealand as well. Since this photo was taken, I have finally explored some more of our beautiful country when my partner and I drove all the way from Whangarei to Dunedin over a week. I am looking forward to exploring the West Coast next!
Grace Chapman is a primary school teacher from New Zealand. She loves going on adventures, camping, reading, cooking, baking, playing tennis and watching rugby.
Thank you for visiting! Here you will find a collection of travel stories from women around the world. We post new ones each week and every one is as unique and varied as the next. Enjoy!