Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Three years, two weeks, one day

That is how long I’ve lived in New Zealand.
Bye Victoria!!
I hopped on a jet in Melbourne on Friday January 4th, 2008. As I (literally – I’m a dork) waved goodbye to the Australian coastline, I wondered what ON EARTH I was thinking. *Why* was I leaving all my friends and family behind? What would be waiting for me when I landed?

As it turns out, friendly people were waiting for me. When I handed over my arrivals card, with “new resident” ticked instead of the usual “visitor/temporary entrant” – it wasn’t exactly a “Border Security” moment. The lady asked me why I had chosen to move here. I said “Oh... work?” And she replied “Oh, that’s nice. Well, welcome to New Zealand!” Cool. Not exactly an onerous screening process. She didn’t even stamp my passport.

One of my future colleagues was waiting for me at the gate, ready for the hour long drive to my serviced apartment by the beach. I hadn’t expected anyone to meet me, so this was such a nice surprise that I could have cried. We eventually arrived at the office after a tour of the sights along the motorway. I was unceremoniously given the keys to the second car I ever called “mine” – a huge 4WD ute. Well, it seemed huge after the Festiva I’d donated to my sister.
My view of Orewa. Pacific Ocean to the left.
So, I spent the rest of the day wandering the streets of Orewa, taking a look at the beach, and settling into my ritzy studio apartment. I was too wound up to even eat, and I spent most of the evening calling my family and friends to reassure them that I was alive, and didn’t have an accent yet.
Enjoying my first evening as New Zealand resident
Maybe I’ll write more one day about my (theoretical) year in New Zealand. Even though I’d signed a permanent contract, I’d kind of planned to come back when the motorway was finished at the end of 2008...

6 comments:

  1. And then you met us - and we were awesome :)
    Go NGA!

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  2. Hahahahaha NGA would need a story all of it's own!

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  3. Aaaah, yes. The "oh shit, what was I thinking??" moment. I remember it well. Although I think moving to New Zealand was always going to be a better experience than moving to Canberra!! ;)

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  4. I'm still having those moments!! Help!!!!!

    Canberra is an awful lot closer to home than Auckland...

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  5. Can't believe it's been that long.

    Can't believe I've been in Adelaide so long, either, and made it through so many of those "what was I thinking?" moments alone.

    I think that working on the Murray has given me a taste for home again...

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  6. I can't believe it's been that long either!!

    People in Australia laugh at my accent now more often than the people here. I guess that says something.

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