Seven months after a car crash almost claimed his life, Dannevirke's Dave Mulinder was back delivering the newspaper on Monday.
Mr Mulinder, 64, was on his bike delivering Hawke's Bay Today early on Monday morning, having battled back from near death after the smash in July last year.
"I'm so lucky and I thank the good Lord because he tipped the scales in my favour, I reckon," Mr Mulinder said.
"I had people praying for me in church and I'm a witness to the good work the Lord does."
When his car went off the road and ploughed into a stand of trees at Ashhurst last July, Mr Mulinder was flown to Wellington Hospital in a critical condition and placed on life support. He had surgery to repair the damage to his ankle and wrist, followed by a second operation to repair facial fractures and breaks and had a long struggle back to good health and mobility.
"It's not much fun sitting at home and it's a great feeling being back at work today.
I feel like I'm part of things again," he said. "It's great to be riding my bike delivering the newspapers, with the sun on the Ruahines behind me."
Although not fit enough to be able to head back into the mountains he loves for a spot of hunting, Mr Mulinder is looking forward to getting a short way into the ranges soon.
"I'm not up to putting a pack on my back yet, but my brother is going to drive me up to a hut in his four-wheel drive. We used to go hunting together and I do miss it," he said.
In the meantime, Mr Mulinder, who is a member of a tramping club in Hastings, is eyeing up his own small adventure.
"I think I might try the new loop walking track in the Manawatu Gorge. I've got a tramping stick, so that'll help me," he said.