Don't you love it when your bowl of pasta arrives and it looks too small to fill you, then you begin to feel warm and satisfied, and realise ... the bowl is still 2/3's full!
Don't you love it when you stop to listen to a really good musician and you discover his name is Scott McMahon, he's Scottish, and you talk awhile. And he tells you the most marvelous story ever ... in his (something like) Billy Connelly accent, confusing you a little because he's serious and the story is true. He let's you photograph him as he sings. You buy his cd.
And don't you love it when you order a small glass of the house red wine and discover it's quite a full glass, and that the wine is good.
Don't you love it when you find a million bookshops, secondhand too, just as you decide that the directions you so laboriously noted down, are too difficult to follow.
... when you find the perfect book for Miss 11. So good that you begin reading it as you eat your pasta at the lovely restaurant that, while out of your price range really, is a great place to cheer yourself up on a grey and rainy autumn day in London. And knowing, simply knowing, that you and Miss 11 have many many hours of skype reading pleasure ahead ... 500+ pages, no less.
Note: she talked me into reading her 3 chapters last night. I couldn't resist.
Don't you love it when you work out how to reach the place you'd like to head to for those weekly meetings with New Zealanders. Although, in the end, that knowledge is for future reference, on a day when you haven't walked your feet into a constant throbbing ache like you just did now, here in the unfamiliar heart of London town.
Don't you love it when you manage to navigate the London Underground, weaving in and out and all over the place, alone.
... and when you find the National Portrait Gallery near Trafalgar Square, realise it's free, and walk the last of your feet off, exploring exquisite portraits of old heroes and heroines, and people you'd never heard of.
And the deep pleasure in realising you can afford that bottle of water in the Gallery restaurant, after discovering a thirst that makes you feel you have just spent 2 days walking in a desert.
Don't you love it, really love it, when you realise you are free to take photographs in the National Gallery.
And there was that other golden moment too, when I understood that no one would miss me at the Ngati Ranana meeting, and so I found a train heading my way and got a seat, despite it being rush hour.
Don't you love it, when everything is new and kind of scary sometimes, but you end up finding Sublime out here in this city where you never imagined you might live.
And arriving 'home', to a warm house, where your truly kind host has cooked up a big feed for dinner, with dessert. It's warm there and the company is good.
Don't you love it when you realise, sometimes, that day ... it was good one.
The images ... Scott McMahon, and the London Eye.