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Published: March 16th 2018
Day 19: Kumara to Hokotika via Cowboy Paradise 70km. The Donkey tries mindfulness
When the Donkey got up the next morning Headwind and Rain were waiting outside the sliding doors of the motel unit where the Donkey stayed. They were furious about what the Donkey had done the previous day. They lashed at the windows and bounced and twisted as they burst with anger and energy. Come out the Donkey, they jeered, and play with us, come and get on your bike. But the Donkey just stood there, considering his next move. He thought he let them rant and rave for a while. He was not in a hurry as he had already done 30km of today’s route yesterday so he could afford to start a bit later. Sooner or later Headwind and Rain would run out of energy and have to go home to recharge their batteries. And that is exactly what happened. At 10 a.m. it was dry. Showpony and Butterfly dropped the Donkey and Spot off in Kumara at exactly the same spot where they finished their ride the previous day and from there the pair departed to tackle the West Coast Wilderness Trail. The Donkey had
done this trail before so he was looking forward to it as it is a beautiful ride on a well-groomed trail through native forest.
The Donkey had decided to stay in the moment and not let his mind wonder too much, yes, he was going to have a day of mindfulness. But soon his mind went to the future, to later that day, when he would meet Butterfly and Showpony again and his mind also went to the past, to his memories, the Donkey likes playing with his memories as he had learned to remember the good ones and not access the bad ones too often, unless he really had too, which these days was not so often. The Donkey wondered if anticipation and memories are allowed in mindfulness, when you are totally in the present moment you cannot be in the past and the future at the same time, surely. The Donkey has a sister in a faraway land who is a mindfulness guru and he decided he will ask her sometime when he is done with all this bike stuff. If he wanted to get to Bluff he would not get there in a hurry if he
only lived in the moment as he would forget even more and take even more wrong turns than he was already doing now with as much planning and anticipation as a donkey can handle.
Some of the track had turned into a river due to that morning’s rain storm but the Donkey and Spot splashed through the water playfully. The Donkey celebrated his rare victory over Rain and Headwind and Spot needed a good wash anyway. Sun was slowly getting the upper hand. Finally you are there Sun, the Donkey said. Sorry matey, Sun answered, I know I left you in the lurch for a while but I was busy elsewhere and Headwind and Rain kept pushing me out but I will try and stay with you for as long as I can.
Cowboy Paradise has a shooting range, accommodation and a restaurant in the form of a saloon, right in the middle of the West Coast wilderness, which the Donkey considered strange, a pub, yes, that he could understand, he had seen many on his travels, too many to count on the toes of his hoofs, there were even pubs in places where there was only one
house, or even no houses, but a saloon, now that was weird, as they only exist in the Wild West of America as the Donkey had seen in cowboy movies.
The view from the deck of the saloon was amazing. The Donkey ordered a hot chocolate and poached eggs on toast, took a photo of the view and carried on. The trail meandered mostly downhill, to Hokitika. Halfway he met Butterfly and Showpony and together they rode into Hokitika. And, surprise surprise, who were standing on the side of the road to cheer them on? Yes, Pussy Cat and his wonderful Gazelle, good friends of Showpony, Butterfly and the Donkey. Pussy Cat had helped the Donkey a lot when he first arrived in New Zealand with all sorts of things but most importantly he had explained the rules of rugby to the Donkey. These rules are so complicated that even after living in New Zealand for nearly 40 years the Donkey still gets confused, but he does not let on, he suspects that most spectators are like him and just pretend they know the rules, except of course for Pussy Cat who knows the rules better than anyone.
Tot: 2.537s; Tpl: 0.058s; cc: 10; qc: 50; dbt: 0.0398s; 2; m:saturn w:www (18.104.22.168); sld: 4;
; mem: 1.3mb