We made the decision about two years ago that the time was right to start winding up our Auckland life. Things had just got too stressful. We have been dealing with a number of serious health issues, which are all in one way or another attributed to stress. We have always talked about moving North but couldn’t imagine running our businesses from there, or uprooting children from school. Then I realised how much of that story was just an attitude and that if I kept telling myself that we would never find the right moment, so we began the very hard process of cutting the strings to the city. I closed our little store in Ponsonby a year ago and shifted our retail online, and got our beautiful home ready to sell. I am currently working through the red tape of what I we can to do in such a special place, and minimizing our impact on the environment.
My family have 25 acres of rainforest that backs onto the Mataraua Forrest at the very top of the Wekaweka valley in south Hokianga. This is a very special place with Kiwi, Kokako, giant Kauri snails and dragonflies. It is also right on the old Waoku Coach Rd which takes you up into the hills with old stone walls, bridges and two great waterfalls... Amazing walks, right on the doorstep.
A big part of our plan is to build an eco-retreat that will be available for all of you to come and stay. There will be a tiny 'art house', in Native Agent style, nestled in the bush - completely off grid and unplugged. We have no cellphone coverage here - perfect for a digital detox!
There will however be a hot tub (wood powered) and a natural swimming pool.
But for now I have bought a second hand tent on Trademe and an old 4x4 ute to get me up our driveway (which is more like an off road adventure) and am preparing to set up camp.
So having uprooted my whanau from their comfortable bubble I have to get cracking and follow through! Let the hard work begin.