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Thread: 9 months here - our list of likes n dont-likes

  1. #1
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    Default 9 months here - our list of likes n dont-likes

    Ok, so we have been in Nelson for 9 months, we are well settled and au-fait with most things kiwi now. Rather than give you chapter & verse of how things have gone for us, heres an easily digestable list of likes & dont-likes;

    WE LIKE
    1. Cold crisp mornings, which develop to an afternoon on the deck in the sun.
    2. Laid back kiwi business people. Ordered some flowers for my sister in-law in Tokoroa, bloke is sending us a bill in the post. Never in the UK.
    3. Kids freedom. Girls go to the local pool on their bikes and go to the aqua disco on friday nights.
    4. Fresh fruit & veg. Damn cheap when its local and in season - just how we like it. Braeburn apples currently 69c a kilo. Love the roadside stalls too.
    5. Lack of traffic. We can get anywhere we like in a few minutes, with no traffic jams.
    6. Visiting the local reserves. Our local council have installed free to use gas BBQs at alot of their reserves. Just take your meat salads & wine. They are always clean and we have had loads of good laughs with other BBQ-ers too.
    7. Swimming is crystal clear rivers in the height of summer - no pollution
    8. Friendly schools. Our girls have been welcomed so well into a school of 600 when they came from a school of 34.
    9. Catching blue cod in the marlborough sounds and pan frying them for lunch on a deserted beach. Jacky still raves about how good it was - food and scenery.
    10. beer-o'clock on a friday. Finishing work a bit early on a friday and having a swift cold one with your work mates before the weekend.
    11. Food & wine festivals. Good wine, good company, live music and PROPER food, not burgers and chips etc. All the local wineries show up, with some bloody good wines - and you get to meet the owners and let them ramble on about how good their wine is. Great fun when they are half cut themselves, if you shower them with compliments as they fill your glass they just keep filling it and filling it.
    12. Smoke free pubs and clubs. I think thats the nrom now in the Uk anyway isnt it?
    13. Stress free work. Not that work practices are any slackere here, but work pressures dont seem to build up. Might be the beer o'clock time on fridays!

    WE DONT LIKE;
    1. Lack of central heating. We didnt think it would bother us, but getting up in the cold is a real moral dampener in the morning. Mind you this soon goes when the sun comes up.
    2. Hoons. A-holes who race up & down our road at all hours. Bah-humbug, sounding like my dad now. Thing is the drain pipe sized exhausts make a bloody racket, and in the summer when the windows are open we can tell which route they have taken by the sound of them braking and accelerating. Better than counting sheep i guess!
    3. Loss of social circle. We are getting a good network of friends now, but its going to take a while to build up good strong friendships. They will come over time.
    4. Fish & chips...........Fish can be good but chips are all frozen. Ask for vinegar on them and they look at you a if you have two heads. Not a major gripe, just a niggle. Particulary when your on the way home from the pub.
    5. Early closing. Alot of shops near us close for saturday afternoon. Liquor stores close about 8 and the local pub is empty by half nine on a friday. Just a case of getting used to it I guess.


    Thats about it, as you can see the likes are much more than the dis-likes. Most of the dis-likes are niggles that really dont concern us too much.

    Feel free to add your own lists - lets see if there are any trends going on here.

    Cheers

    Nick

  2. #2
    Dawn's Avatar
    Dawn is offline All Knowing Deity
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    Really, really interested to hear the bit about the kids freedom and school.

    I worry about Lauren a little. She is 16 and it's her last day at school today!! Here she is off with her friends most nights, going to see her mates bands play in local gigs and stuff, well when she's not dancing of course. She doesn't know what the scene is like there, neither do we, she worries that she won't be able to do the things she can here. Her friends are important to her and I really think the friend network she makes in NZ will be the difference between her staying and wanting to come home in a year or so. She is of course of that age where she may want to be hanging around these 'hoon' guys you describe although she is very sensible and has never ever been in any trouble here. hanging out on the streets at night isn't her style.

    Charlie hates school, he's 11. So I really need school to be a positive experience for him otherwise he'll be hankering for home as well. He is very sporty. He's in every sports team going and makes friends that way but he is concerned they don't play footy in NZ as he isn't a rugby fan. He has a lot of freedom at the moment because we live semi-rurally. He goes out with his mates as soon as he comes in from school and they're playing in the farmers fields, building dens, climbing haystacks, rope-swinging across the river etc. I am so aware that he has to build these networks back up again quickly. He is very sensitive and may become low if he feels trapped in!!

    Add to this that we don't have PR and so aren't entitled to education and you'll see that he can't go straight into making friends at school. We'll have to find ways for him to find other young people. And GET THOSE ELUSIVE JOBS AND PERMITS ASAP!!!!
    Passionate about the unfathomableness opportunities of kiwi-a-gogo-land

  3. #3
    kokopeli is offline God like figure
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    he is concerned they don't play footy in NZ as he isn't a rugby fan
    No need to worry about that Dawn. Soccer is really active in NZ - it just doesn't get the same publicity as rugby or (yawn) Americas Cup Yatching. There are about a dozen soccer pitches on our local domain (just outside Christchurch). Loads of different teams train every night between 4pm and 9pm.

    The place is packed at the weekend - games all day on Saturday and Sunday. They even have matches for men of a certain age who should know better. I'm not saying they're past it, but some of them look as if they went to Normandy in 1944........

  4. #4
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    Dawn

    There seems to be quite a few bands around the nelson area. They held the "smoke-free rock quest" a couple of weeks ago, with loads of "up & coming" local bands. I would guess this scene is mirrored accross all but the most remote parts of NZ. So I think she will find it quite similar to the UK in that respect.

    Soccer is very popular at school level. My brother coaches one of the many saturday morning league teams. I drive home past a big sports field complex. There are junior soccer matches on at least 3 nights a week, plus saturday morning league too. Charlie sounds a bit like my nephew, in the summer he disappears down to the local creeks catching eels on hand lines (they are about 2ft long!), fishing and generally doing what young boys do. I am sue he will fit in well.

    Cheers


    Nick

  5. #5
    Bermy Girl's Avatar
    Bermy Girl is offline Senior Member
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    Thanks for the insight Nick and Jacky! It makes my heart sing to hear that the kids are doing so well and have so much freedom. This is one of my main reasons for wanting to move to NZ, so my son Lucas can enjoy such a life and get outdoors and really enjoy it. Cheers...

    As for the lack of Central Heating, any chance of getting heaters or is it too costly?

  6. #6
    LilAmy's Avatar
    LilAmy is offline God like figure
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    Hello,

    Well I thought I would add in my likes and dislikes:

    Likes
    1. How helpful people are to you when they know 'you're not from round here'. We went to Martinborough at the weekend and met so many lovely people. Even got talking to Scotty the butcher and got two rather large steaks for $4!!! Yes thats right $4.......I almost fell over

    2. Healthier eating. It seems more things here are homemade and less processed tasting. Over all when you eat out you tend to feel that you are having a homemade meal made by Mum rather than a rich, not so good for you restaraunt meal.

    3. The weather. Who can really complain about that? I mean it's Winter now and I am still in short sleeved tops and sometimes even shorts.

    4. No traffic - we stay out by Wellie airport and I drive into work and it takes me 12minutes at rush hour to the CBD. In Edinburgh we stayed near the airport and it took us 40mins into the city!

    5. Being happy - for some reason we just feel happy more of the time and reflect on our lives here and the general feeling of this is a great place to live

    6. Exploring. We've never seen so many wonders of the world in one country. It's amazing. Just a drive away you can get to almost anywhere in NZ and see something spectacular if it's not glaciers, its golden postcard beeches or pinnacles on the coatline

    7. Catching your own trout and smoking it. MM tasty

    8. The amount of free things on offer to the general public that are interesting and well looked after eg Te Papa Museum, Parks, Lagoons, Walking/Hiking Area's, Glow Worm caves and Campsites. You dont see as much graffitti and litter as we used to in other countries.

    9. Kids getting up off their seats on the bus for you. Superb! There's a wee rule here where school kids have to offer their seats to adults if there are no seats available. Quality!

    10. Relaxed work place. We too have Friday drinks around 4pm. It's weird as you're sat drinking a beer or wine at your desk working away. We also get morning tea usually which I didnt get back in Edinburgh.

    11. Public Holidays - the first part of this year I think we had a public holiday every month. It's great. Again back home I didnt get them.

    12. How easy it is to open bank accounts, buy a car, set up healthcare etc

    13. The trusting Kiwi. Stu and I test drove a car at the weekend and they didnt ask for any details from us at all. They gave us the keys and off we went for 20minutes! Normally in the UK the car sales man would sit in the car with you.

    14. There are many many more things that we love about NZ but I think I'd bore everyone with them.

    Dislikes

    1. Not having friends or family close by. This will come with time and once we settle down. The friends we have made are lovely and I hope we dont loose contact with them.

    2.Boy Racers. I think we maybe see more of the boy racers here than in the UK but I think that's down to the age that kids can start driving at. Those engine breaks or what ever they're called really annoy me.

    3. No chippy brown sauce or proper haggis!! But I'm getting used to Steak Sauce and the tinned Haggis Mum posts me

    4.Clothes, we find them quite expensive. Of course convert them back to the pound and they're not but you cant do that once you earn the $$$'s.

    5. The wind in Wellington. Dont wear lip gloss and dont style your hair on a windy day here.

    6. Lack of public transport in area's outwith AKL, WGTN and ChCh

  7. #7
    johnty is offline Senior Member
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    loving this thread,
    soooo pleased to hear that the footie is strong around Chch as my son could live on mars as long as theres footie, and our daughter for that matter.
    and the schooling is a big plus from what we hear on this site and our mate in Timaru (shes a teacher)
    and to have the time to go fishing again "how can this be"

    September seems sooo far away

  8. #8
    kokopeli is offline God like figure
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    and to have the time to go fishing again
    You'll be heading to the right place then Johnty. We bought our kids 4' long boat rods for about $30 when we first arrived and they have had sooooooooo much fun fishing. Salmon, trout, snapper, kahawai, mullets, ohh the list goes on. I'll try and post the pic, but our proudest moment was a 16lbs or 7.27kgs snapper - dinner, tea and breakfast for a week! Priceless.

  9. #9
    kokopeli is offline God like figure
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    Here you go - Mrs K cut my head off on purpose!


    Havelock (10).JPG

  10. #10
    Taffy's Avatar
    Taffy is offline He who shall be ignored
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    Why? Are you so unbearably ugly that she thought you'd be banished from civilised society for showing your face?!

    Nice fish btw!
    Taffy

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

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