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Thread: Do you feel welcome?

  1. #1
    Kirstpaul is offline Junior Member
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    Nov 2007
    Living in Brittany, France at the moment

    Unhappy Do you feel welcome?

    We've made the decision to leave France and move back to Scotland to collect ourselves together for the move to New Zealand. We were sitting last night discussing why we're leaving France (for the umpteenth time) and whether we're making the right decision, as regards kids etc. And we basically boiled the main thing down to this, that although we feel really accepted in the village where we live and in the things we do everyday. When we leave our confort zones of home and work we are decidedly given the feeling that we are resented for moving here by the french.

    This is our biggest fear of moving on after returning to Scotland.

    Can anyone tell me if they have ever experienced this in New Zealand? It's just a horrible feeling to feel unwanted

  2. #2
    Glenda's Avatar
    Glenda is offline All Knowing Deity
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    Jan 2005
    Bay of Islands


    I don't think you will feel 'unwanted' here. Unlike many French, most of the population in NZ are or have descended from migrant stock (though some could do with a little reminder of that!). Whether you will feel like a square peg in a round hole depends on how adaptable you guys are, plus how long you are prepared to give it a go here. As you know, it takes time to build up history and acceptance from locals, especially in rural areas.

    There is some pride in Scottish ancestry here - Dunedin is famously Scottish and Waipu (just south of Whangarei in Northland) hosts the 'Highland Games'.

    You'll probably love it here.
    In NZ since June 2005
    Better to light a candle than to curse the darkness - Chinese proverb

  3. #3
    Ginabridget's Avatar
    Ginabridget is offline Senior Member
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    I'm from Waipu, and we have the Highland Games on 1 January every year, when I was growing up I thought the bagpipes, marching bands and tartan was a distinctly kiwi thing , I was even made to go to Highland dancing lessons.
    26 January 2008 - House under offer, we're getting closer
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    Anticipating a move to Auckland in the next few weeks - November 08

  4. #4
    alan&moyra's Avatar
    alan&moyra is offline Senior Member
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    Dec 2007


    DOnt want to put a dampner on it, but .................. although we dont feel unwelcomed we are finding it hard to break into the Chch preocial lifes with friends had to make, but we do feel welcome, we have never been treated as outsiders.
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  5. #5
    nickydwuk's Avatar
    nickydwuk is offline God like figure
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    May 2007
    Was Oxford nr Chch, NZ now UK
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    Sometimes you can try too hard. Mind you it is still early days for you both - you're only in your 3rd month. I don't expect to make friends other than 'aquaintances' from work for the first few months. Although we will always make the effort
    Nursing Registration sent 5th August 2007
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  6. #6
    Dawn's Avatar
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    Hamilton NZ
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    Our personal experience has been nothing but positive. The only person not to make me feel welcome was the bloody jobsworth customs officer who fined me for having an apple in my bag at the airport and threatened me with a criminal record and a custodial sentence when I challenged him by suggesting that it just may have been in there because my 5 yr old put it in there without my knowledge and not because I was a professional apple smuggler looking to stretch the New Zealand border control authorities to its limits. Did he think, by any chance, that it just may have been an oversight?? His stoney face told me not

    Anyway, as I was saying; we have found everybody to be extremely friendly indeed. Everybody we've come across......oh, hang on I've just remembered someone else who made the mistake of accusing my family of ruining her books in a bookshop...Poppies bookshop in Hamilton CBD....The week before Xmas we were all in there Gary, myself and the kids, all looking for gifts for one another. We are all voracious readers and spend a lot of money on books and believe me books are expensive here, she should have been glad of the business BUT we had been in there for about 20 mins, me pouring over several books, Gary searching shelves high and low, Poppy sitting on the floor reading through several Charlie and Lola books, Charlie laughing his way through Bunny Suicides and Lauren delighting in cards, postcards and books about art and culture. I finally made my decisions about what I wanted to buy and spoke to the kids to get their choices from them and made my way to the counter. For some reason I didn't understand, the woman couldn't seem to take my money quick enough, all $250 of it. I smiled and said thank you and left the shop, leaving Gary to finish making his choices and pay for them. Once outside, the kids started telling me about how the proprieter had been giving them dirty looks, Poppy (6) had been told to 'get off of the middle of the floor and put those books down', she had actually been sitting very quietly in a corner thoroughly engrossed in her books, Lauren had been told to stop turning the stand with the cards on it and to hurry up and decide what she wanted, when she saw Poppy being harassed she had intervened and been told to 'stop causing trouble'. Charlie had been told that as he was enjoying the bunny suicide book so much 'he had better be going to buy it'. I, completely engrossed in reading blurbs etc was oblivious to all of this until this point. Well, I wasn't impressed with someone who had a whole family of readers in her book store (whom she should be encouraging) and went about putting them off buying anything at all BUT to boot was more than happy to take my money. So I went back into the shop where Gary was just about to spend another $200 and demanded an explanation for her behaviour. She said that she didn't want the likes of my family in her book shop ruining her books. I asked her to show me which books had been ruined - she couldn't. I gave her the books I had purchased back and asked for my money back, Gary returned his choices to the shelves. She said I couldn't have a refund because there was nothing wrong with the books, I said that there was plenty wrong with her attitude and that I would rather another book store benefit from my familys business, a book store that appreciated the potential in encouraging children to enjoy and respect books from an early age. She said that 'as a matter of fact I could have my money back because she didn't want the likes of me in her shop anyway'.

    Stupid woman

    Apart from these two anal kiwis, everyone has been amazingly warm, friendly and accommodating. They've gone out of their way to be kind and to get to know us and introduce us to others. They have even accepted me, with all of my in your face, questioning, kooky, wacky, ways

    And to get back to the original point, no offence to the French but they are French
    Last edited by Dawn; 26-01-2008 at 11:25 AM.
    Passionate about the unfathomableness opportunities of kiwi-a-gogo-land

  7. #7
    Taffy's Avatar
    Taffy is offline He who shall be ignored
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    May 2004
    Hamilton, NZ
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    Slightly off topic but Dawn will probably be interested to know that said Poppies Bookstore is up for sale now! Lack of customer service skills obviously got the better of her business. You should enquire about buying it

    The greatest mistake you can make in life is to be continually fearing you will make one.

  8. #8
    selchie's Avatar
    selchie is offline All Knowing Deity
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    Don'tcha just love service with a snarl?

    Our city is sisters with Nelson, and a Nelson couple who are wood turners were at our local Wood Fair last year. When we told them we were working on immigrating, but were still fence-sitting, the husband immediately said "do it!" The were very nice, and we wound up talking to them for a while. I'm sure if ever we popped in to their shop, they'd be quite welcoming.
    If men had wings and bore black feathers, few of them would be clever enough to be crows.
    - Rev. Henry Ward Beecher, mid-1800s

  9. #9
    muffin mum is offline Member
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    Jan 2008


    Where we live we often have the opposite problem. I am a very friendly person and so are most Kiwi's . I find that once in a while I have to stop myself from taking peoples phone number as I have enough now. A trip to our local shop can take anywhere from 15mins- 2 hours, depending on who we see on the way, whether we end up 'having' to stop at the coffee shop to chat to people or end up in someones house. I wouldn't have it any other way. I don't think our people magnet skills will change much closer to the city. I never fitted in in the UK and am always shocked at the lack of smiles on the street. I must look like a nutter smiling and saying hello.
    Moving to Khandallah at the end of May and becoming a property tycoon. We are renting our current house out!
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    Been in NZ since October 2001 and have a Kiwi daughter 4 and a HALF.


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