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Thread: NZ - has it changed you?

  1. #1
    MotherBear's Avatar
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    Default NZ - has it changed you?

    I just posted this on here already, but it hasn't appeared. Spooky . Will just have to try again and see if it makes it on here this time.

    We seem to have run out of questions at the moment, so I thought I'd throw this one.....well, two...... on here.

    For those who've been in NZ for some time, do you think living in NZ has changed you and, if so, in what way?

    For those who are still waiting to go, are you hoping NZ will change your life and in what way?

    Over to you......
    Mother Bear

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  2. #2
    ebianca's Avatar
    ebianca is offline Gingery, Peppery & Spicy
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    Cool

    Guess i'll kick of then.

    We are hoping to get to NZ before the end of the year.

    We are certainly hoping for a better quality of life- more time together as a family and more things to do together as a family without having to spend a fortune (i hope). Better weather means we can have more time outdoors at the park or beach and going walking(tramping I htink?) when the girls are a little older and maybe even invest in some bicycles.

    I'm hoping to have a healthier lifestyle- better weather means more walking/exercise etc a bigger house and garden means growing own veggies etc- don't even have a garden here in the UK

    Hopefully OH and myself will have better time together with less stress- be able to relax more easily I hope although we will miss our free weekends (advantage of having grandparents around) but never mind can't have everything can we.

    Anyway think that should answer the question MB.

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    Although we are still in UK we hope that by moving to NZ OH can stop work - or at least stop working in a factory and do something outdoors that he enjoys. We also hope to buy a property that has some land (about 1 acre) so we have somewhere for our dogs and space for veggies etc... We hope that is will also provide my two teenage boys with a more outdoor lifestyle instead of being stuck indoors playing their xbox. With OH not working as much we also hope to be able to spend more time as a family - I will still be working full time.

    Plus having beautiful views from our house of either the beach or hills etc... will make the upheaval worth while.
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    MotherBear's Avatar
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    I think we're trying to get away from everything bad that the UK seems to stand for currently. Although we haven't lived there for quite some time, we've been monitoring the news coming out of there, along with taking on board what other people are saying. Where the media is concerned, of course you can discount some of it because it's often blown out of proportion, but we feel we can't just ignore what everyone else is saying. They can't all be wrong and that's one major reason why we chose NZ. There's always someone coming back here from holidaying 'back home' and they usually have a tale of woe about how bad things are there. Perhaps if you're still living there you don't notice it so much, whereas someone who's lived away and returns with fresh eyes will notice changes so much more, especially when they're for the worse.

    It's been said that NZ is, to some extent, 50 years behind the times, but from what we've seen of it, this is part of its charm and it's not so much in a way that really matters. Comparing visits back to the UK with visits to NZ, I'll take the latter any day. Being smiled at and chatted to on a regular basis in the shops was just one point we appreciated in NZ. It's not too different scenery and culture-wise from the UK and they speak the same language (nearly, anyway ) so it was a good option when we were looking for somewhere to settle when retirement looms.

    The twice we've been to NZ, I felt quite at home and didn't find it 'strange' in any way. I just felt 'grounded' there. Originally we were going to live in Spain, but, apart from our new-build house there being a disaster which we disposed of quickly, there were other issues we didn't like e.g. British colonies where the expats were fighting amongst each other in a power struggle, thieving was very common and the Spanish people weren't particularly friendly, which I suppose I can understand with all these Brits descending on their territory,trying to take over. Then there was the language to contend with.

    Next up we considered Dubai as they were opening up to expats buying property there. I think we had a lucky escape with that, as it's just one big building site these days. It's a concrete and glass jungle and not what we're thinking of for retirement. On top of that the climate is very similar to here and the summers are gruelling and not so easy to cope with when you're older. We won't appreciate the winters in NZ, I'm sure, but with the prospect of central heating going into the house shortly, that should help a lot.

    I hope we've made the right choice and certainly, at the moment, we feel we have.
    Mother Bear

    Try to bloom wherever you are planted.

  5. #5
    Glenda's Avatar
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    Hmmm, this is a hard question to answer for us. With the shock of my (soon-to-be ex) husband declaring he is staying in the UK, we have had more changes in our lives than expected.

    That aside, I would say that we are all happier living here. At first, the children missed UK foods in particular but have adapted. They enjoy school, are less pasty-faced, and certainly more relaxed and not as worried about material possessions as they were in the UK.

    As a family, we started off healthily - walks into town, bush walks, beach visits, etc. but once we had done that a few times the novelty wore off. The kids liked to go about on their bikes too, but that enthusiasm has slipped slightly now that they are explored everywhere! Perhaps if there was a park near us the kids would go out more and leave the dreaded TV and Playstation alone. I probably need to ignore what pressing tasks I always seem to need to do, and drag them out (might do that today!).

    The people are definitely friendly here and, whilst shop assistants etc. are told what to say to be friendly, they usually are genuine and will chat away with you. Making real Kiwi friends takes a little more time as they will usually see you as someone with a past life that is hard for them to comprehend. It is easier once you have developed a NZ 'history' which of course takes time.

    Even though we do have English accents, we do not now feel English. Having been here for nearly two years now we feel comfortable with the Kiwi way of life and feel quite protective of this little country.

    Last edited by Glenda; 04-06-2007 at 10:08 AM.
    Glenda
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    RedAlligator is offline Member
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    Not sure if NZ has changed me at all but have definitly done some things here that I am pretty sure I would never have done in the UK, so not sure if that counts.

    First off, I went to college when first moved here. I had been out of education for over 20 years so to go back to it was hugely out of my comfort zone and to do a course where we had an exam every week or two weeks for nine months was bloody terrifying. But I absolutly loved it and totally surprised myself on how well I did. Also, when I found out that a lot of the "exams" we were going to have were role playing type things that we were going to get assessed on and also some of the exams involved giving talks to a panel of people! Well, to say shit and myself in the same sentence was a bit of an understatement! But have to say now, since doing it, that sort of thing doesnt phaze me anymore as believe it or not, I got used to it!

    The other thing I have done which had never done before was to act on stage!!!! Now that really was the scariest thing I had ever done in my life and not a 100% sure I will do it again. That was so nerve wracking and completely terrifying but I managed to get off that stage without making a complete fool of myself (I think) even though I was on stage the whole time in my pjamas! Shortland Street, here I come!

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    kokopeli is offline God like figure
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    This is a toughie, but it’s one I’ve been mulling over for a while. I think the fact that I’m 40 this year has made me all reflective…

    We left the UK about a year ago and have been in NZ for about eight months. For us (that’s Mrs K, me and three kids) moving to NZ represented a chance to ‘start again’ in a new place with a clean slate. If that sounds like we had messed things up in the UK, please accept my word that we hadn’t. We had a nice house, lived in a great place and had a good lifestyle. We just fancied a change and wanted to have an adventure.

    Whether or not you change as a result of living in a different country is really hard to say. Whatever you do, you’re still you. You still see the same face in the mirror. I guess you still have the same habits, fears and insecurities. Maybe a few more because living in a foreign place is different and it does take time to adjust.

    The hardest things for us were not knowing any people and not knowing where anything was. We bought decent map books, picked up leaflets everywhere we went and talked to pretty much everyone we met. If we parked next to people on campsites, we got out of the van and said Hi. If we sat next to people on trains and planes, we talked to them. We called Glenda when we got to Kerikeri and went over for coffee and muffins (thanks again G). We stopped our campervan and brewed coffee for very tired two cyclists at the top of the Cardrona Pass. We wouldn’t have done any of those things in the UK. We’d have been too busy, too worried, too ….. us.

    Having been in Christchurch for a while now, we go and see things if they’re on because we appreciate the fact that people have made the effort to come to town. Lloyd Cole, the Penis guys, Swan Lake. It’s relatively easy to do things like that in the UK, but somehow, we never did. We also make a point of getting outdoors and doing loads of things as a family. Yesterday, it snowed on the Southern Alps, so we drove out along the Arthur’s Pass because none of us have ever seen proper mountains in wintertime. I can recommend the pies from the Pie Shop in Sheffield on Highway 73 - they're fabulous if you’re ever that way!

    Apologies if that's a bit if a ramble. Like I said, it's a really tough question
    Last edited by kokopeli; 05-06-2007 at 11:35 AM.

  8. #8
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    Hi Guys,

    Well Stu and I have been here since Aug 06 and I dont think we have changed as people but we are getting to do more things that we love.

    I cant remember the last weekend where we didnt go away and explore a different town or city. We are always out and about as much as we can. We love seeing the different life styles each place has to offer.

    We also go tramping every weekend. We always liked doing this in Scotland but cos it rained a lot we always used that as an excuse not to go out. Now we get up early and off we go. We also take picnics with us instead of eating at the local cafes when we do go out.

    I think over all we are healthier and seem to try an use what we have in the house rather than going off and buying a new table or more ingredients for something. If that makes sense??

    I do think with these small changes that we are much happier. We also talk alot about the children we hope to have and how life here will be so much better for them and give them more opportunites in life. Back in Edinburgh we used to talk about having kids but not actually what their life would be like.

    Hope this hasnt bored you ... :)

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    I haven't found any of your posts boring. If any thing, it is a comfort to hear from those "who have gone before" talk about their life in NZ without over emphasizing how "great" it is. Life is life and it is what we do every day that counts. It sounds like the NZ air has motivation vapours. I ask myself all of the time "why have I decided to move to a country I have never visited?". "What is it I am looking for when I move?". "What am I missing in my life now?" I don't want to have high expectations of what NZ can give me. NZ doesn't owe me anything. It is more a matter of what I can do for myself in a new country and maybe this is where the motivation to make changes in your life comes from.

    I have lost all motivation here in Bermuda. To say I have no life would not be accurate or fair either on those people who are in my life. I am just generally unhappy with my life and the way the island is going. I need to recharge my batteries so to speak. I need to not only look at things differently but look at different things! Living on this tiny island for all of my 42 years, well, I just have to get off! I have driven to both ends of the island (it is only a 45 minute drive from one end to the other!) and believe me "I don't want to see either end again!".

    See, now I am the one rambling!

  10. #10
    MotherBear's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ShellBda View Post
    I don't want to have high expectations of what NZ can give me. NZ doesn't owe me anything. It is more a matter of what I can do for myself in a new country and maybe this is where the motivation to make changes in your life comes from.


    I, for one, will be very interested to hear your opinions on the country after your visit or maybe even during your visit if you happen upon a PC with an Internet connection.
    Mother Bear

    Try to bloom wherever you are planted.

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