Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Hicks Mansion

With the settlement on the house some weeks away, my frenetic workload had suddenly and completely evaporated. It was long past time to make good on my promise to visit Paul.

Paul Hicks is one of my best friends from college. We studied together, worked together and drank together. We've even pursued the same girls and managed not to fall out over it. About four years ago Paul decided to settle in New Zealand and he now resides in Wellington.

Final approach into Wellington airport revealed New Zealand's national capital from behind a bank of long white clouds. A dispersed conurbation of low housing packed into undulating hillsides bounded by infinite seas. Paul was there to meet me at the gate.

We passed the four day weekend pleasantly. The days we spent drinking and hiking. We also drank, and got drunk, I think every night. Visiting perhaps every Irish Bar in town, and a significant proportion of the remaining pubs. But the insobriety was always good natured and the whole experience thoroughly relaxing. Are we getting too old for full on carousing, or just too old to start fighting over the same girl?

My lasting impression (inevitably, perhaps, because of my recent home purchase) was of Paul's house. It is simply vast. A four bedroom home on two levels may not be Buckingham Palace, but for a bachelor in his first home it's positively sprawling.

Paul offered me a choice of rooms. Selfishly I selected the largest. A room that might otherwise have accommodated a training session for a basketball team. I considered the dimensions carefully and concluded that the entire original structure of my house (both floors) would fit in the volume provided by this single room. The ceilings were absurdly high and fiendishly ornate. Daybreak illuminated the chamber through an imposing window in the north wall and flooded the space with brilliant light. It was like waking up in a cloud.

I think I'll be going back.


Ciara said...

Hi Darren, glad you managed not to kill Paul. Glad you enjoyed it too. Will really have to get out to both of you eventually. Ciara

David said...

Howdy Darren! How is Paul. Yes me too, I shall have to endeavo(u)r to visit the two of you.

House looks in a great location - that an outdoor Olympic pool just up the road?

David H.

Darren said...

Here in Oz "Olympic swimming pools" are just called "Swimming pools"

Everyone born here comes out of the womb with their swim suit on. They just don't understand the idea of not being able to swim. So I've finally decided to learn. I shall make it the subject of a blog entry shortly.