The Last Hurrah





Well, the weather in New Zealand has certainly turned. Last Thursday and Friday were so sunny and warm—perfect for deliveries. But Saturday and Sunday were SO cold and rainy! Why did I think it would be a good idea to work in the container and to drive around in such cold weather?!

But the foul weather had to be suffered if I wanted to have an empty container as soon as possible. Again, thanks Lizzie for being guilted into saying yes to working with me these past few days!

How we both really felt about getting up early on the cold, rainy winter mornings this weekend lol.

On Sunday, Lizzie and I drove all around Christchurch, delivering to the last few families from 11 to 5 pm. We managed to make it in time for Lizzie’s weekly church gathering at 5, and I was roped into attending the church group’s dinner. I have a bit of a complicated relationship with religion, but going along with Lizzie was the least I could do after how much she’s been helping me with CVOC.

I managed to convince Lizzie to do deliveries with me again on Monday morning, and we set off at 9 am to deliver in the cold again. We finally finished at 1 pm after a few hiccups; from Sunday to Monday, the two of us managed to deliver to nearly 20 families. And—trumpet fanfare, please—THE CONTAINER IS OFFICIALLY EMPTY AS PROMISED!!!

I can officially lift a 25 kg bag of rice now–took me only 5 tries!
Delivering some of the last donated nappies to current and soon-to-be mothers.







But no time to relax as I had to immediately get ready for the appreciation dinner at 3:30 pm hosted by Linwood Mosque, one of the mosques attacked during the March 15th shooting. Zhiyan and I were graciously invited to the iftaar which publicly acknowledged the numerous community and government organizations that supported the victims and affected families in various ways.

The event was very sobering—many people recounted where they were on that fateful day and shared many touching sentiments. It was very heartening to see all the people who have worked tirelessly behind the scenes and to remember that there are still so many good people out there in the world.

Zhiyan and I with Linwood Mosque’s Certificate of Appreciation for CVOC–truly an honor to be recognized.

Zhiyan and I left the event around 7 pm, and we went home and relaxed with a nice cuppa. PSYCH! Of course not, we went back to work and delivered care packages to the last three families. Which means—trumpet fanfare, please—ALL ~100 OFFICIAL CARE PACKAGES PREPARED BY ME IN THE LAST 3 WEEKS HAVE BEEN DELIVERED!!!

Zhiyan and I completing the last official care package delivery to one of the most genuine, kindest families I have interacted with in New Zealand.

However, Monday evening was also my friend Noel’s going-away party which I had to miss because of CVOC work. Yet again, another hard choice that I had to make. But I managed to arrive in time for the group picture and to steal one cupcake from his party, so still a win I guess? I’m now officially on leave from CVOC work for the next 1.5 weeks as I need to focus on studying for my two final exams. And I’ll definitely need all the luck I can get. Fingers crossed I still remember how to be a straight-A student.

What I’ve learned:

  1. Always underpromise but overdeliver
  2. Why it’s so hard for adult friendships to last–both parties are too busy with work or other priorities and neglect the friendship

What I need to learn:

  1. How to network and interact with unknown professionals at work events–why am I so awkward?!
  2. How to throw an amazing going-away party for the best roommate ever