It’s been great living here in East Wing at Laidlaw College… sort of. There have been many perks to living here, or at least a few… This is all to say that we are very excited to have now found a cute little flat to move into, so we will soon be saying goodbye and moving on from our time at East Wing. But before we do, we thought it would be appropriate to reflect and reminisce about all the fun and fond memories that East Wing held. After all, it’s been the place we’ve called home for the past 5 and a half months.
Here’s to the highlights of East Wing.…
The guy who sings very loudly from his room in the Boys Dorm… He brought joy to my day on many occasions as he belted out tunes from the top of his lungs, usually around the dinner hour. My favorite was when he sang “The Fray.” He does a pretty good rendition of Miley Cyrus’ “The Climb” too. He gets real into it, and I’m sorry, but you just can’t help but laugh a little to yourself, or along with the other people listening in, as he serenades everyone within hearing distance. Alli and Courtney got to experience the joy of Karaoke Boy while they were here, and I’m sure they would agree that his songs helped liven up East Wing.
The fruit trees that grow ever-so quietly behind the East side of East Wing. Feijoa trees, lemon trees… you wouldn’t know they’re there, unless you forget your key and have to sneak through a few people’s yards to get around to the other side of the building. I think people wanted to keep them a secret, but sorry, secret’s out!
East Wing is also the place where tropical flowers surround the premises year-round, and wild Calalillies bloom in the winter time. I was ever-so delighted to find a cluster of gorgeous, blooming Calalillies next to East Wing just a few weeks ago.
I will miss those lovely vintage plates we had the pleasure of eating off… until someone jacked them from the communal cupboard and kept them in their room, all for themselves.
Here’s to the heater that kept us warm during these months of NZ winter, and to the electricity costs being included in the rent. We were able to keep our room at a nice, comfortable temperature, so that multiple layers of clothing were not needed. For those of you who have not endured an NZ winter, you have no idea what a luxury this is.
Our neighbors, Adam and Rochelle, were very kind and friendly people, not to mention generous with their baked goods as well as pretty much anything else we were in need of. We will miss living down the hall from those two.
The times we shared living in East Wing with the McConnells, the Keels, and the Koerselmans at the beginning of our time here, will go down as the times when East Wing was at its best. Some communal meals, late nite hangouts, and just being able to be there for each other as we all dealt with the challenges and newness of moving from North America to New Zealand. Had we come just a week later, we would have missed out on sharing this experience with at least one of these families. We are so glad we came when we did, and were able to get to know these awesome families and be part of each others’ stories of moving to the other side of the world.
This one time, Annie Keel and I were headed to the campus fitness centre late at night, heading across a walkway that leads from East Wing to the rest of campus, when we nearly stepped on a wild hedgehog. This hedgehog was way too big for a cage, and was probably twice the size of my sister Morgan’s pet hedgehog, “Heidi.” We were definitely startled and there may or may not have been some screams. After running past it, we were only slightly weary of more spiky creatures emerging from the tufts of spiky grass scattered throughout campus. Oh, the times at East Wing.
The garage-type buildings out back of East Wing have some nice character to them, and served as a great backdrop for some photoshoots, specifically a set of engagement shots I did for the Laidlaw Student Council President, Emma, and her now-husband, Mike.
We cooked some good food in East Wing, but let me just say how much more awesome it is going to be when we cook it in our own kitchen. We can put our dishes away at our leisure, and choose to keep the soap bottle on the countertop instead of underneath. And no one will write a nasty note on the hall whiteboard if we forget to put away the dishrack. It will be our kitchen, and we will be free.
This is a tribute to East Wing; in all its good and frustrating times, it was the first place we called “home” in NZ, and we are thankful to have had a place to live these past 6 months. We are excited to move on, but East Wing, we will not forget you.
Two days from now, we move into our new place, a two-bedroom apartment just 3 blocks away from Mel’s new school. Pics and details of the new place to come…