Two weekends ago Dave, Bush and I set off for an adventure the likes of which we weren’t prepared for and did not expect. It was one of those parties we used to go to when we were at school, usually our parents didn’t know where we were, who we were with or how hammered we were going to get when we got to the mysterious destination.
The drive out was long, probably because we were all so excited the party. Dave and I have heard about these West Auckland parties for years and now were on our way to attend our first one, and it was a goody – Ez’s 30th. There were a few years in my late teens where I was driving out to Auckland’s West Coast beaches every day, but I had never driven down the road on which we travelled two weeks ago. I don’t know what it looks like in daylight hours but at night time it looks like you are driving througha tunnel carved out of the forest. There are pretty much no driveways breaking up the undergrowth, just solid west coast bush. The road is gnarly hair-pin bends and blind corners and is one lane the whole way down. We didn’t know where the party was, I had some sketchy directions from Jo, a battered sign we barely saw in the darkness said ‘EZ’ so at least we knew we were on the right track. To cut a long story short we found a spot where many, many cars were parked so figured we must be close. There were still no lights to be seen or sounds of a party. It was so dark we could barely see each other as we followed some others down the hill. I asked if this was the way to the EZ’s party – I was told it was, but then the helpful person turned to his mates and said ‘faaaah bro, I should have told them to fuck off if they don’t even know how to get to the house bro’. He obviously didn’t know that we had been invited by The Ruas – yeah, as in John Rua – the hardest brother at the party, did you know he played two games of rugby that day? Two! He had our back he kept assuring Dave all night (love you John-boy xxxx).
We turned the corner and walked into a clearing surrounded by Hansel and Gretel cottages, flags and bunting everywhere, hundreds of people amazing music, a pig on a spit, a bonfire and the BEST party of my adult life. It was a massive dreadlock convention, Bush couldn’t believe the ratio of dreads to non-dreads and the fact that most were being sported by white guys who didn’t appear to be rastas (it’s a New Zealand thing I had to explain). We danced up a storm with Joanne and got home early….in the morning that is, around 4.30am. I totally surprised myself with my party-stamina. Maybe 30 really does become me?