Kumon evreebahdee

You pass the Albany pub (gentrified from its former station), then accelerate up the long wooded hill which leads toward the Riverhead Road. The land has turned to lifestyle blocks now, unlighted. You can put your lights on full beam. The turns are sharper, though, and it is a relief to reach the straights of Dairy Flat. No-one is waiting to turn out. You go on to Silverdale. There too, the lights are on, but no-one’s out walking the wide New World streets. Over the hill, past the fire station, and down to the long flat beachfront of Orewa.

So tie your long hair up again
This is the end of every dream

You’d thought, originally, you might stop there. Gaze at the sea, stroll along the beach … no such luck. The car is telling you to keep driving, and you weather the three or four banks of traffic lights without impatience, before winding up yet another precipitous hill. Past Hatfield’s, and Waiwera, and Wenderholm, then over into the Puhoi valley. The road is good; you drive with easy intensity.

tango dancer
spun out of time

Somewhere along a long straight north of Warkworth, the impulse suddenly deserts you. Sleepiness erupts. You should be home, not here. It takes some time to find a place to do a U-turn, but you are assisted by the lack of other traffic – any other traffic.

Caught in a hailstorm
and there’s nowhere to shelter

On the way back, you imagine yourself stopping to pick up a hitchhiker. But who could be out at this time, in the small hours of the morning? Perhaps another Maori boy? You shudder at the memory. You’re past all that now, past all that intensity …


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