Time to say goodbye ...
Autumn had finally arrived and that also meant that the final week was upon us. We began the process of finishing at the different things we've been involved in; the Chewsday lunches, Kids Club, Dan's work with the Elders and of course church. But before we talk about that, we had an appointment with the past.
We headed back to Newport to spend the afternoon having a cuppa with Aunty I and having Gareth, Keith's cousin, take us around all the places that Dan's grandparents grew up in and worked, as well as his Dad's first house. It was a fascinating walk through the past and it was wonderful to make physical connections to the history of where he came from. Asher was on photos though, so I can't show any of them here. Sad face.
We ended the afternoon with dinner at a pub called 'The Darren', a bit of a play on Dan and Sharon.
Gareth's daughter and her family came along too and we had a lovely time altogether.
It was a great time together.
Back to the final week, first up was Chewsdays (no photos) and Kids Club. Kids Club had been my favourite thing in our working week and I was a little sad to say goodbye. We'd been involved in the planning and so had decided to do 'Daniel and the Lions Den', mostly so the kids could chase Dan around. Mahahahaha.
Food also happened, with the kids making 'Daniel's' that they ate. Here are a few favourites.
At the end of the night, we did some photos with the group. Bethan took some awesome selfies.
Note: the boy in green persuaded the boy in white to do the fingers the wrong way. It was a gold moment.
Kids Club is filled with amazing people and children. The night is well organised and isn't cheesy at all. The kids are so happy to be there and there is a real sense of community. Maybe one day we'll get to return and see some of these kids helping out at it. Who knows?
Our last time at Dan's favourite coffee place Chainhouse.
We also had a visit to World of Groggs, a place filled with ceramics that are made on site. They are mostly rugby related but there was a huge amount of t-shirts signed by players and going back to the 60's and 70's. There was a bit of All Blacks stuff. We could have brought Richie and the World Cup for 180 pounds. We took this photo instead.
Saturday morning was Dan's final park run. I tagged along to offer support.
Because Halloween was coming it was a Halloween themed run, though most people were just in their active gear. It was a frosty morning and I was glad for my scarf and hat.
Off he went for 5ks.
And before I knew it, he was back and it was almost over.
PB run with 23 minutes and something seconds. I think my presence helped with the running. But then it was home to pack.
We wanted to have a final outing as a family, so we headed to Cardiff for some errands and to eat dinner at Cardiff Bay. We did find some lego creatures lurking in the bay.
We had a delish dinner at Wagamamas. The food was soooo good. Dan wants to take up making food like this at home. I don't think I'll discourage it.
Sunday morning was church. They were having a farewell lunch for us so we made a classic Kiwi item, a bit of an ongoing laugh around the old asparagus rolls.
Dan took a selfie from the pulpit.
(I don't think this photo is actually from that service but it probably doesn't matter)
And then we were done. It's hard to believe 8 or so weeks have gone by. We have loved our time in Wales, exploring and spending time together as a family plus the added bonus of getting to know people in a community. We take home some treasured memories, gifts and new facebook friends. Hopefully, a few will come and visit us in Christchurch some time.