Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Driving On

Exactly 5 months today, on 23rd July, my 70th birthday, and after walking 30 kms a day for 70 days, I should be finishing Vic's Big Walk outside the house where I was born 70 years earlier.

After one night in Christchurch, we crossed the Southern Alps today to Hokitika. We were reading only a few days ago that, because of known tension in the Alpine Fault, New Zealand (which has earthquakes every day) will suffer a huge ‘quake of at least 8 on the Richter scale sometime in the next 50 years (could be today or any time from then on, but it will happen). If the energy release is northwards, Hokitika will be among the town completely flattened. So we have our fingers crossed.

I realised soon after posting the last item about my failing eyes, that I had better explain why I am still, at the moment, able to drive, before somebody sees me at the wheel and declares me a fraud. I was not quick enough. When Adele and Brian, our hosts for the next 6 days, were greeting us, Adele asked me the question.

It is my central vision which is affected, quite severely already. But at the moment – and I am sure this will change – my peripheral vision can “see past” the problem and I have no difficulty – or not too much of a problem – in seeing things which are further away. So I can drive a car, although I would falter if you asked me to read a number plate. As soon as I believe the eye thing is making me unsafe, I will hand over the reins.

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