It felt strange to return to the office. A thick layer of dust lay on every surface. I sneezed, and blew off the dust covering a black object on my desk. I picked it up and put it in my pocket, and hunted for all the other dictaphones.
The search took most of the morning. It worked up an appetite and a thirst, so I went for a spot of lunch at the Pig & Whistle. I ordered the sourdough bread with garlic butter, and the prime 8-oz beef burger, and washed it down with a couple of craft beers.
By the time I got back to the office at just after 2pm, I needed a bit of a lie-down. I woke up again at 4pm and sat at my desk. I rolled up my sleeves, and fired up my PC.
The server said, "You have 6,504,397 new emails."
But an interesting story caught my eye, and I decided to read FORTY CELEBRITIES YOU DIDN'T KNOW HAD DIED.
A call came in from a constituent that there was a problem with parking at Queenstown airport.
That sounded exactly like the kind of crisis that needed a finely calibrated political mind to sort out, so I called in at Sergios menswear and bought a $1080 Hugo Boss sportswear jacket, and then charged down to the airport.
The jacket really made me look the part as I stood at the airport entrance and offered my services as a parking valet.
I wish to add my voice to the public outrage about Green co-leader Metiria Turei's admission that was guilty of benefit fraud as a solo mother.
I demand a police investigation, and further demand that she make herself available to police and the media. She must be made to answer for her behaviour.
It's sickening when someone chisels the system to fatten their wallet with unearned taxpayer money.
I recorded my feelings about it on a dictaphone, and headed to the Pig & Whistle.
Someone at the airport tossed me the keys to a late-model Porsche. What a beautiful machine! I decided to take it for a bit of a spin.
I didn't recognise any of the towns I sped through. None of them can hold a candle to Queenstown.
Thick fog began to fall. Visibility was reduced to a few metres. I pulled over, turned up the heater full-blast, and fell asleep.
The battery had gone dead. I couldn't get any cellphone reception. I groped my way through the thick fog towards a light shining in the distance.
As I got closer I realised it was coming from a cave above the sea.
I climbed in, and said, "Hello?"
My voice echoed in the cavern. A man approached holding a lantern. His beard was tangled and his eyes were black as coals. "I've been expecting you," he said.
I always thought I'd see Aaron Gilmore again.