The guy at the rental car place gave me a ride to the train station where I hopped the train all the way back to Wellington.
The train ride was much the same as before, but I did not have the nice woman beside me, nor did the mist coat the mountains. I read and slept and ate. And for a while I hated on myself so hard.
If one were to look at a map and see the path I'd taken, where I'd gone and what I'd done, they'd be baffled. I was moving from one town to the next, covering so much land and passing by so much in between, and stopping only long enough for a beer or two. I felt like I was making a mess of this journey of mine, that I was throwing away money, that I wasn't trying hard enough, that I was fucking failing.
But at the end of the train ride all those feelings went away. I arrived in Wellington and collected my things. With my big duffel bag on my back and a smaller backpack on my chest, instead of getting a cab I hoofed it into town. The wind was really whipping, and my back was aching, but the evening sky was beautiful. I didn't know where I was, or what I was doing, or where I was going, and I didn't give a shit.
I was doing it the right way, I told myself. I was doing it my way. I had no ties and I was embracing that. I was taking in the atmosphere and appreciating the landscape and enjoying the food & drink and avoiding the tourists.
That night at a bar alone, in my little black book I wrote:
"This evening in Wellington I get drunk and extremely positive. God Bless this World."