We ended up having quite an expedition this morning. I wanted to get the fusing web stuff for that patchwork project I was working on (that got laid aside when the Outlaws arrived), so we had intended to catch the bus to Hands (a fantastic craft shop that I avoid shopping in, because I tend to buy a lot more than I intended every time I go in there), then catch a bus from there up to Papanui to do some grocery shopping.
The easiest way to get to Hands from our place is not to catch our normal bus, but to walk up to Wairakei Road, which is about 10 minutes away, and catch the 17 from there. So we checked the timetable and set out about 15 minutes before the bus was due, to be sure to catch it. Of course, buses round here never seem to actually run to anything resembling their printed timetable, so just as we reached Wairakei Road, we saw the bus sail past, running early. And of course we were just too far from the bus-stop to be able to run for it. The next bus was half an hour away, so after looking at the map and working out that it probably wouldn’t take much longer than that to walk there anyway, we decided to start walking. It ended up being a very pleasant walk, because the sun was shining, and there was just enough chill in the air to make walking nice. And it was a lot shorter than we expected – it took us just under half an hour, and although we were following the bus route the whole way, the bus never passed us, so we got there faster than we would have if we’d waited for the bus.
Amazingly, at Hands they not only knew what I was talking about when I asked about the fusing web stuff in my usual vague way, but they actually had the exact stuff I needed, and (more amazingly) I managed to resist temptation and not buy anything else (although I did have a thorough browse of the shop, and was seriously tempted by a few things…).
The next phase of the plan was to walk over to Papanui Road, about 10 minutes walk away again, and catch a bus up to Northlands to get the groceries. But when we reached Papanui Road, we decided that as we’d walked this far, it seemed pointless to catch a bus for just the last little stretch (especially as we could actually see the Papanui shops off in the distance, so we knew they weren’t that far away) so we started walking again.
The walking turned out to be a good idea, because it meant we saw a couple of shops we might not have noticed if we’d just whizzed past them in the bus. One was a pet shop, which reminded us that the cats had shredded or lost all their catnip mice, so we went in to have a look for some replacements.
The remains of one of the previous batch of mice.
This pet shop had a huge range of cat toys, and catnip mice of all descriptions. And best of all, they had some of the same sort of mice that DianaCoats sent the cats earlier in the year, and which Ming went totally mad over, much more so than the catnip-infused ones. We’d never seen them anywhere else, so had assumed they were something that was only available in America. But here was a whole bucket of them! We bought a few of those, plus a couple of similar ones with long feathery tails that we thought would probably also appeal, and a few ordinary catnip mice.
The white ones are Ming’s favourites.
And then a bit further along the road, we came across a fabric shop, so I went in on the off-chance, still looking for some trim for my trousers. I didn’t expect to find anything, because I had something particular in mind and hadn’t been able to find exactly what I wanted anywhere, despite trying all over Christchurch. Anyway, I walked into this shop, went over to the shelves of trims and laces, and found exactly what I’d been looking for!
Once we were loaded down with groceries, we did give in and take the bus home, but it was a very pleasant walk over all, and turned out to be well worth it after those finds. And of course, I managed to release a couple of books while we were walking: A Simple Plan by Scott Smith and Beauty by Brian D’Amato.
Awhina is coming over for dinner tonight, so I’d better get on with actually preparing something, but first, a couple more gratuitous photos:
Progress report on the topiary garden. I’m almost finished with the really fiddly stuff!
Although it’s been a bit warmer during the day over the last few days, it’s still been bitterly cold at night. As soon as I lit the fire last night, Ming curled up as close to it as he could possibly get without actually sitting up on the hearth, and refused to move for the rest of the evening.
Currently reading: Theory of War by Joan Brady