it sure felt like i was maria von trapp before she was officially a von trapp singing “the hills are alive…” in soprano up there on mount victoria where the hill definitely was alive with the greenness of it all. except that, of course, i couldn’t sing to save my life. and even if i could, i probably still wouldn’t because i’d be too busy panting and gasping for air. (i am in such great shape it’s amazing.)
anyhow, i reckon there are two routes to get to the peak of mount victoria. i don’t know about the first because i took the other one but i’m guessing it’s paved and pretty smooth, with the road built especially for the hundreds of tourists who visit the highest volcano on auckland’s north shore.
the second route was what i called “the road less traveled.” partly because it was recommended by a local who lived on the foot of the hill. and mainly because, well, there really was no road to begin with. just a narrow footpath that leads you to where you should be if you manage not to slip and slide off the steep cliff.
but it’s a very scenic route, i’ll give it that. i truly enjoyed watching the world before me look miniature from where i was standing — the cars on the faraway roads like matchboxes and the tiny tiny people like puppets on strings while looming majestically behind them is rangitoto, auckland’s largest volcano which is also the youngest at about 600 years old.
however, the best part about that route is the wooden bench sitting by its lonesome self. i loved that bench. there was something totally poetic about it. its beauty marked by a touch of bittersweet sadness that only the most sensitive of artists can feel. (obviously, that’s not me. maybe jeff.)
but, engraved on the bench is something that would touch even the hardest of hearts. and it made me smile and appreciate the value of life in the shadow of death; the value of love regardless of the many forms it takes on. a shape-shifter to suit everyone’s needs at any given time — be it a friend, a family, or a lover. something we all are at one point or another.
oh, and this is my beautiful auntie betsy, who was so kind as to shelter and tour me around auckland for a week at such a short moment’s notice. i love her! =)