A mudpool changed my life
It wasn’t just boiling mud and steam that erupted into Susan Gedye’s life when a mudpool unexpectedly opened up in her Rotorua garden, there were ‘‘beautiful things’’ too.
Gedye’s Meade St home made national headlines last year when in the early hours of June 25, a newly formed mudpool exploded into life. When Stuff first spoke to Gedyes, just a few hours after the initial eruption, it was with a backdrop of bubbling noise, huge vents of steam and hot mud being flung into the air.
Speaking again recently, just a few feet away from the now dormant crater, Gedye’s said there had been no indication ahead of the eruption that thanks to what she now believes was a combination of Mother Nature and God’s plan, her life was about to change. It all started at around 2am with the house shaking in what she believed at the time was an earthquake. Then she looked out of her kitchen window.
‘‘Huge pile of steam, shaking house, I grabbed the kids to get out.’’ She said she phoned Rotorua Lakes Council and within ten minutes their geothermal inspector Peter Brownbridge was on the scene, and he had words of reassurance that the mudpool was unlikely to swallow the house. Despite those words Gedye admits it was ‘‘a long night’’.
‘‘It was shaking the bed all night so it was hard to sleep.’’ By morning, with the mudpool continuing to expand, the advice had changed. ‘‘Me and Peter were standing down here and looking at the property and both said yeah, it’s time to go,’’ she said. ‘‘It was growing by the hour.’’ Even on that initial morning, Gedye dealt with the unexpected eruption with good humour – at one point telling assembled media she should start charging curious tourists who had also been visiting the site.
‘‘At first it was scary, but rather spectacular as well,’’ she said. She cited an additional reason for her calm demeanour too.
‘‘Funnily enough I guess my faith in God is what grounds me and I knew I had to just get on with it. Couldn’t just sit around and feel sorry for myself.’’ Speaking months after the event, Gedye said she now believes the mudpool, and her move back to her father Wayne’s house, was ‘‘part of the plan’’.
Cancer, and old age, had robbed him of his wife, best friend and father. ‘‘I was a bit worried about him. I could feel he wasn’t OK and the grief was starting to happen,’’ she said. Her daughter’s presence has been particularly uplifting she said, and for all of the whanau.
‘‘To have her grow up with her grandfather, there’s a real beauty to that. Beautiful things have come from it,’’ she said.
Susan Gedye in front of the now dormant mudpool that forced her from her Rotorua home back in June. Inset: The mudpool that exploded into life in Gedye’s garden.