Thursday, 9th, June, 2011.
I had another bout of sleep walking last night. I was lying in bed when I heard my mobile phone talking to me, It was one of the young men who is living here at James house. He was calling to say I should come outside. I lay there confused, I was only wairing boxer shorts and wondered if I should get dressed or not. I fumbled around in the dark for a while looking for my trousers, I eventually put them on and almost got to the door when I realised that it was only a dream. This happened a few times throughout the night. my phone glowing a ghostly green ever time I was contacted.
I got up early in the morning, prepared my lunch, had some breakfast and went to work. It was a clear calm day, the siluet of the mountain a black jagged tear in the sky. As the bus took us to base camp the sun rose and the light shone from behind the mountain, its shadow looming and stretching over the land below. Only in the distance the tall peak of Mt Ngauruhoe poking out of a white sea of cloud.
Our job today was to move a gun turret base up the mountain. We loaded it onto one of the chair lifts and road up in front of it. When we arrived at the end of the chair lift run we jumped off and when the turret base arrived we tried to lift it off. We failed and the heavy torpedo shaped piece of solid metal dropped to the ground. It took three of us to carry it up to the gun named shorty. Up the rocky icy slope. All of us breathing heavily and sweating. Finely we arrived and strapped all the hoses and electrical wires to the old gun turret of the shorty gun. For some reason the old turret has become bent and misshapen. The base which is attached to a flat base of concrete reinforced with metal had bent so that the gun was now leaning out. We undid the bolts and waited for the helicopter to arrive. Up untill now the helicopter had been sprinting up and down the mountain taking the guns up and other heavy things back down to base camp ”one the helicopters couldn’t get enough lift and it had to drop one of the guns in mid-flight. It hit a snow mobile when it crashed to the ground, that’s why we never get near them when they are lifting stuff” Frilli said as we watched the helicopter approach with its long metal cable dragging behind.
the official helicopter assist team attached the cable to the gun and the helicopter easily lifted it up into the air. The noise was defining and the wind coming down from the over head blades blew fiercely on my face
It circled over head and Frillie, Monty and myself crouched down well out of its way as it easily lifted the gun up into the air and took it back down to base camp.
We then took the bent base down to the ski lift again. It was much bigger than the one we took up. I felt like a solder carrying a giant war head down the mountain. Moving it from shoulder to shoulder as the weight became uncomfortable, avoiding the icy patches and the steep paths we arrived back down at the lifts again.
The rest of the day was spent attaching more water hoses to the guns near the base camp. As the day wore on the clouds rolled in, quickly turning the mountain into a misty unclear place.