This morning, instead of being pounced on as expected, we woke to an empty house, which is a strange feeling when it is someone elses place! My brother had taken The Squishies to the library and the sista-by-long-term-defacto-relationship (let's call her sistasana#2) had gone shopping.
We chilled, made coffee, raided the cupboards for healthy eats (homemade muesli), chilled some more and then Brosana turned up with The Squishies and announced that we were going to Te Papa. It was 'cats and dogs'ing outside and Te Papa is an enormous indoor space where you can set children free and be fairly sure that you won't lose them. It was brilliant fun. The Nef#1 is a child with an exceptionally tuned inquisitive streak. This is Mr 'draw me a robot, Aunty Sara'. Right before cracking out the door we were reading about space travel and I had to get ultra-inventive about what might be inside a space station - I'm sure they have genetically engineered gravity-defying vege gardens. At Te Papa he was all over the giant squid and kept reminding me that we must see the 3D squid movie which had been packed out when we first tried. Eventually we did it, got to the front, donned our 3D glasses, and then he provided running commentary to the whole room about what was on the screen. :D Well, there's no point in being a wallflower, huh?
We skipped the earthquake simulator - The Programmer had tried it yesterday and deemed it 'lame' - and headed for the cafe. There Miss H (niece#2) impressed me by devouring at least half of my salad (feta, pumpkin and greens) and some of my chocolate, which she also thought was awesome even though it was 75% dark. I had to confess this to Sistasana#2 later, and having been lulled into deep relaxation by a few hours without the kids, she assured me that this was totally ok.
About the time I was thinking about attacking my espresso, someone thought to check the time and then all hell broke loose as we realised there was a serious danger of missing our plane back to shaky Christchurch. I should mention that Brosana is also a programmer and when him and The Programmer get together, the incomprehensible conversations can go on without pause for hours. I think, like horses or dogs, they get overexcited to encounter their own kind and time passes too quickly. The up-side to this is that Brosana is an e-commerce expert and was imparting some high-end tips about what to do with the Sana site. It was a quick drive back to their casa and a veeery quick pack, but we made the plane. To our surprise there was a welcoming party when we landed - Mama, Papa and Sista Programmer, looking a bit shook up.
Apparently, while we were in the air, there was a major aftershock (5.3) that knocked out the power in our area. The Programmer and I looked at each other, psychically communicating messages of concern about our new, massively expensive TV, which has not yet been firmly tethered to the wall. It was the first thing The Progammer checked when he got home. In fact, he did that even before helping me get the bags up the driveway (it's important to have your priorities in order). It was still were we left it, unlike the books on the bookshelf, which have fallen over. We were relieved to find that power had been restored and headed out to find food at the Tandoori Palace. I got the lamb korma, which is quite creamy. The trick there is to leave most of the sauce in the pot and team it with carrot sticks... that's what I did tonight in any case and now I'm munching an apple for dessert and thinking that I did ok, foodwise, over the last two days. The only off-plan thing was the Paris Cafe indulgence and that was small and, most importantly, worth it.
Well, I've been fending off hug-deprived cats for the last 20 minutes, so I think I'll head to bed and just surrender to being used as a warming device. They are feeling completely hard done by because I accidentally left the cat-flap locked when we raced out the door on Thursday. I was too busy doing my last-minute blogging... That means they could get out of the house but not in and therefore spent most of the last two days outside as the cat-sitter didn't know how to fix it. Oops. I suppose I'd better make it up to them by sleeping in tomorrow. :D