We are here! It has been a fun few weeks of living out of suitcases whilst seeing family and friends, but it does feel good to finally unpack and know where everything is at last! Huge thanks to mama Farris for her expert help with packing. When I say help, I mean she did it entirely whilst I panicked that we were accidentally going to forget something important or pack some restricted item which would result in us being stopped at NZ customs before later being named and shamed on the TV series ‘Nothing to Declare’. Thankfully that was just my overactive imagination and we only forgot the extension leads…which means that I can either charge my phone or dry my hair, not both….First world problems, eh? 🙂
Packing up to move abroad for two years turned out to be much different to backpacking or holidaying for a few weeks. When we went on a motorbike trip camping trip around Europe we just shoved a few changes of clothes, toiletries and a tent into the pannier bags, but this was much different. I knew that we would be able to buy essentials when we got there but travelling with an infant on a 28-hour journey meant that there was an extra amount of preparation to ensure the journey was as smooth as possible for us and other passengers. No-one wants to be sandwiched between a screaming baby and an emergency exit on a 16-hour flight.
Our adventure began the moment school finished for the summer holidays at 2pm on 21st July. Our bags were packed, the car was loaded up and we made our way directly to Gatwick airport for a 6pm flight to Belfast to spend a few days saying farewells to friends and family. A few days later we drove to Dublin airport for the NZ adventure to begin. After stopping over in Dubai briefly we flew straight on to Auckland where we spent a few days with friends before arriving at our temporary accommodation in Wellington on 30th July. So basically it took us a week to get to the other side of the world. I knew it was far away….but still!
All of our worldly possessions were bundled off onto a shipping container about 8 weeks prior to our departure and are currently cruising along somewhere between Singapore and here. We are very grateful to be living in a fully furnished apartment, two minutes walk from Jeremy’s new office in the centre of the city. We’re finding our way around and figuring out which part of the city we would like to live in longer term. Either way, we’re here for the next two years and what we have seen of the country to date is truly stunning. I think we’re going to love it here.
People told us that New Zealanders are some of the friendliest on the planet- and we are still in awe of how true that is. Having been given a business card and contact details on one flight by one lovely stranger and added to a Facebook Mums and Tots group by another, all before touching down on NZ soil, I am feeling very welcome indeed. People go out of there way to be helpful and I have yet to meet someone unpleasant. There is something really beautiful about the kindness of strangers.