One of the great things about Piha is the abundance of time I get for myself out here. The kids usually leave the house at eight o’clock and don’t return until four in the afternoon. That gives me eight hours of quality alone-time that I can spend in great alone-time-ways: When the waves are good I head down to the beach for a surf, when they’re not I go bush walking and when the weather gets really bad (like this week) I snuggle up with my hot water bottle under a blanket and immerse myself into a great book. Not that I don’t like the people of Piha or the girls – every single one of them is lovely but don’t you also appreciate that bit of alone-time every now and then?
Since a couple of magic books have “found me” some years ago I am a firm believer that the right book comes to you at the right time. And if you’re not ready the book will patiently wait on your shelf up to that moment where you go “That one might be a good read right now” So it happened in my life. The book “Conversations with God” had found me in a second hand book store in Chiang Mai, Northern Thailand last year but it never felt quite right to start reading or I always found excuses like “it will be too religious and spiritual anyway”. But then something nudged me to bring it along to New Zealand and I couldn’t have asked for any better brain food for my time here in Piha.
As the title suggests it is all about having a conversation with God. The author, Neale Donald Walsch, was at a low point in his life when he wrote a really angry letter to God, asking him some profound questions about life, why stuff happens and why he never seems to get what he wants. Over the course of the next weeks and months God did answer (although it is never revealed in what way). Walsch wrote the answers down, published Conversations with God – which remained on the New York Times Best-Sellers List for 137 weeks – and thus became a millionaire obviously.
See, I’m not really a religious person (even after reading the book) but Conversations with God contains a few wisdoms that resonated well with my current state of mind (or let’s rather say “being” – since that’s what the book is about). Get out of your mind and just be. Don’t over think, enjoy the present moment. I’m not the biggest fan of Walsch’s writing style and there were indeed moments when it all got a bit too God-the-almighty-like for me but it still was thought provoking and an inspiring read. Though best about it were the places I read it- here’s a picture of my favourite reading spot in Piha (especially when the surf’s up and every now and then you can have a look at the guys in the waves). Picture taken from the Tasman Lookout which can be accessed from the south end of South Piha Beach.