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Thread: First Proper NZ Post

  1. #1
    nattydread's Avatar
    nattydread is offline God like figure
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    Jul 2004

    Default First Proper NZ Post

    Here's a breakdown of the adventure so far,


    About 5kg per bag over the limit for BMI flights from Glasgow to Heathrow.
    The check in chick never said a word though and put the bags through without any hassle.
    Also found out at check in that the dozey mare that sorted our flights didn't have us
    on a through ticket so we had to collect our bags at Heathrow.
    Anyhoo, the flight down to London was fine, kids okay, even though very excited.

    Arrived London, collected bags from carousel, walked across to Terminal 3.
    There was a bus available , but the 5 minute walk was a bit of welcome exercise to be
    Checked bags in for Air New Zealand, (again they were a few KG over but nothing was said)

    Lunched at TGI Fridays in Terminal 3, made a couple of last minute phone calls and bid
    farewell to blighty.

    Plane was a refitted 777 so we all had personal screens.
    (Can highly recommend "The Worlds Fastest Indian" a great film to get inside the Kiwi
    First leg from Glasgow to LA was okay, kids slept for a while when it go to 10pm UK time

    Arrived LA.. punters with kids got to go to the front of the queue, so that made the queueing more bearable
    The actual room is no bigger than an 18yard box on a football pitch.
    Free drinks and crips and apples really dont make that much of a difference.

    Back on the plane and off to Auckland..

    Major butterflies kicked in for me on this leg..

    Mainly worrying about silly things..
    I've read so many stories about how friendly kiwis are and of people being offerred cars for learning to drive in
    and all other sorts of things, I worried that nobody would like us and we'd be met by unfriendly kiwis..
    I panicked also about our choice to\ move to a pretty rural area and wondered if we had
    done the right thing.

    The kids played up a lot on this section of the flight.
    They weren't too bad looking back on it, but at the time it wasn't a lot of fun.

    Landed in Auckland a little bit late, and had a bit of a rush across to the domestic terminal for our flight to Wellington.
    Made it in time though and apart from the walk across to the terminal and a 4 year old with some of affliction for
    walking slower than a slow thing then it was okay.
    Again there is supposed to be a bus, but we were all lead to a marked walk way and a 15 minute walk.

    The bags again were overweight but this time they had "HEAVY" stickers attached to
    them but no extra charge was made.

    The flight was great,
    we flew down the west coast of the north island
    and we had some great views (through the clouds)
    of some cracking beaches and little towns.

    The approach to wellington was nothing short of spectacular..
    I need to look at a decent map to see what the hills etc are called that we flew over but it looked amazing.

    We had some time to kill at the airport, but the only thing we wanted to kill was the kids..
    Nathan (4) especially was a nightmare..
    we found a toilet in departures and had a bit of a freshen up.
    Got a bite to eat and headed for the train station.

    The first thing we noticed about the city was how quiet it was for a capital city.
    It's very relaxed and clean and not at all like a capital city.

    It was about as busy as Taunton on a wednesday afternoon..

    The train journey up to the wairarapa was nice..
    It looked a lot like the back of my eyelids for most of it though,

    We were met at the station by a couple of girls from\ the hospital where sylive is going to be working.
    They helped us to the motel, and gave us a quick guided tour and handed us the keys to our hire car for the next 4 weeks.

    we went to new world for some initial supplies and headed back to the motel.

    We ate and headed to bed at about 1700.
    We all slept through till about 0600.. Felt much better after some kip..

    Going to bed at tea time was a recommendation from someone at the hospital, and it certainly helped to get over the worst of the jet lag.

    Will do more later.. 28k dial up sucks..

  2. #2
    SteveyC's Avatar
    SteveyC is offline Right Royal Pain In The Posterior
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    Feb 2005

    Default First Proper NZ Post

    AGHHHH!!! I could squeal like a girlie, MB was right those three words put the hugest smile on my face. Properly excited for you and REALLY glad that it's living up to expectation thus far. I've been having exactly the same concerns as you were on the LAX 2 AKL flight. All sounds too good to be true, here's hoping everyone will think that and not too many folks will embark upon the journey leaving the chosen few to share in what NZ has to offer. ;)

    More posts dude, HURRY UP ALREADY youi lazy LAZY boy!!!!! [smiley=icon_wink.gif]

    [smiley=icon_mrgreen.gif] [smiley=icon_mrgreen.gif] [smiley=icon_mrgreen.gif]

    Happy settling :icon_cool:

  3. #3
    Glenda's Avatar
    Glenda is offline All Knowing Deity
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    Jan 2005
    Bay of Islands

    Default First Proper NZ Post

    Informative post, Natty.

    Bet you'll be a bit busy for the next few days. [smiley=045.gif]

    In NZ since June 2005
    Better to light a candle than to curse the darkness - Chinese proverb

  4. #4
    selchie's Avatar
    selchie is offline All Knowing Deity
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    May 2005
    Behind the Redwood Curtain
    Blog Entries

    Default First Proper NZ Post

    Congrats on your safe arrival, Natty. I hope your new home treats you wonderfully. I'm looking forward to more posts as you settle in and explore. [smiley=Happy_mail.gif]
    If men had wings and bore black feathers, few of them would be clever enough to be crows.
    - Rev. Henry Ward Beecher, mid-1800s

  5. #5
    Maggiemoo's Avatar
    Maggiemoo is offline Senior Member
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    Feb 2005
    Salisbury UK (was Tauranga NZ from 06/06 to 05/07)

    Default First Proper NZ Post

    Thanks for the insight into travelling with kids - though I think ours are younger than yours so we will be "bolting" them into the pushchairs for queuing times, and the rest of the passengers will just have to ignore their whinging!!

    You've obviously not been to Taunton on a Wednesday afternoon recently [smiley=icon_biggrin.gif] - traffic is hideous - gridlock city down Station Road, Bridge Street and Staplegrove Road!! [smiley=icon_biggrin.gif] I'm originally from Taunton and still get stuck in the traffic when I go back to see the family! I was hoping to avoid the traffic when we get to NZ in June! [smiley=icon_lol.gif]

    So glad to hear its all going well - be interested to hear how your first few weeks go, and any survival tips will be gratefully received!


  6. #6
    DawnMarron is offline Oh Masterful One
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    Apr 2005

    Default First Proper NZ Post

    How wonderful to hear its all going great! Keep us posted matey. [smiley=006.gif]

  7. #7
    Pulsarblu's Avatar
    Pulsarblu is offline God like figure
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    Oct 2005

    Default First Proper NZ Post

    Thank you so much nattydread for the post on wellington. I am going there soon in August and I know now roughly what to expect. [smiley=icon_biggrin.gif]

    I hope you and your family are enjoying the new place.

    Stay in touch and I wish you all the BEST!!!


  8. #8
    nattydread's Avatar
    nattydread is offline God like figure
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    Jul 2004

    Default part 2 sorry for the delay

    the people at the motel we are in for the next few weeks are really nice and have helped us settle into the town.
    Very helpful and full of advice.

    Our first full day in New Zealand started with a drive around all the houses that we'd been viewing on realenz, we were especially interested in the "charming family home" we'd been keeping an eye on for months back in the uk.

    We also had a couple of rentals that we had been looking at on t'internet.

    We drove around for an hour or so familiarising ourselves with the town, first impressions were all good, basking in autumn sunshine the place looked perfect.

    we had a coffee in one of the many cafe's (with people sitting outside in autumn, you couldn't do that in scotland)
    Some of the muffins and pastries are unreal, (apple and rhubarb crumble is a particular favourite of mine)

    The town has a lot more going on than we were lead to believe.
    We picked up a mobile phone for a hundred and thirty dollars.. and we got ourselves a bank account, (kiwibank) we arranged a private post box to see us through to rental time.

    The local library has broadband so we spent a half hour there catching up on emails and sorting a few british accounts out..
    I got signed up with a dial up account for emergency purposes.. (Slingshot, $10 a month.. it's a low user account but should be fine until we get a proper address for broadband)

    The kids were struggling in a big way. Not really talking about home a lot, or missing anyone in particular, but the whole jet lag thing (and the fact that we've moved them to the other side of the world) really affected them. My kids are "strong headed and boisterous" (Diplomacy is a hidden talent of mine) at the best of times, but here, especially compared to the kiwi kids they are just an absolute bloody embarassing nightmare..
    Cheeky and rude (to us mainly thankfully) and really out of sorts...

    We had a look at the a couple of the rentals and one was no good at all..
    the other, I had received a picture of months ago, was being repainted, top to bottom inside and out. new carpets throughout, new fire, new cooker, new fence being built outside.
    It is a stones throw (literally) from the only school (out of about 5 or 6) in the town that Lauren has ever shown any interest in , and also about 300 metres from the hospital Sylvie will be working in.
    It is being rented by a company called Trust House, who bought all the old Council Houses when they were being sold off..
    This can mean some of them are in ropey areas, but all houses round this rental are privately owned and the proximity to the school and hospital have really sold it..

    It's ours and we can move in when it's finished.. Our furniture will be here in June but the hospital have come up with a house that we can use till the furniture arrives.

    We've bought a car..
    A Suzuki Vitara so it's 4WD and has a tow bar and all the toys.. A 2.0litre V6 should see us through i reckon.

    we visited the local swimming pool on Sunday and it was fantastic, I always used to get stuffy life gaurds in the UK telling me that nathan wasn't allowed to jump in like that and all sorts of funny looks.. just because the boy has some go in him and isn't afraid of the water,.... it really used to jar me off..
    anyway, these guys were quite happy for him to jump about and do his thing.. they could see that he was safe enough.

    (been a few days since i penned the above so I'll try and pick up where we left off)
    Life without broadband is a real bind. We should be back on broadband in a 3 weeks or so hopefully when we move into the rental.
    I'm still job hunting unfortunately, really hoping to avoid the commute to wellington, but we'll give it a few months and see what happens.
    At the minute I'm a house husband, (not a very good one.. anyone got a need for some used to be white pink polo shirts,,??) Anyway, the weather has been fantastic since we arrived.. Anyone familiar with the works of crowded house will be able to identify with the four seasons in one day song when they get here..

    One day, it was really windy, but in the time it took us to park the car in the drive and walk through the house to the garden, the wind was gone, and it was scorching again, the longest period of rain has been about 30 minutes.. I'm sun burnt, the kids are bronzed, it's just bloody brilliant..
    One of the cafe's in town does a mixed fruit smoothie for four and a half dollars, and when you're sat outside in the sun slurping away you'd think all your birthdays have come at once..(well I do anyway)

    I've noticed in the last few days, the amount of classic old british cars around...
    There are 3 or 4 Morris Minors in town being used day to day, and they look brand new, also about a dozen mark 2 escorts around a few capri's and one of the best MG's (an A I think, but not sure) I've seen.. There's an old Austin A35 parked up in a drive round the corner from this house we are now in, I haven't seen it go anywhere yet, but it is sparkling.. Must be the lack of salty roads.. I realise I am rambling a bit, but there's so much to see and tell you all about, it all blurs in to one undeniable fact. This place is the dog bollocks, and I wish I'd done it sooner!!! Pardon the french (why what did they ever do for us..??)

    Hope all of you are well and you're plans are going along apace..

  9. #9
    SteveyC's Avatar
    SteveyC is offline Right Royal Pain In The Posterior
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    Feb 2005

    Default First Proper NZ Post

    Awesome post dude, down to earth and just useful which is exactly what you need (I do anyway).

    Dare I ask how much rental is? What have you got 4 bed detached kind of thing?

    Also what about the Vitarra. My Bros just bought a 1.6 for his missis for about 850 I think.

    That is unless you ommitted it on purpose in which case ignore me.

    So glad to hear it's as good as expected and can't wait to join you, well more like, arrive in NZ specifically, but you know what I mean hehe.

    If you crappy conection has meant you're only tracking this thread then I can tell you some of the folks are missing you badly on the the forum, it appears the rest of us are inadequate. :icon_sad:

  10. #10
    Pulsarblu's Avatar
    Pulsarblu is offline God like figure
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    Oct 2005

    Default First Proper NZ Post

    Thanks! I am so glad that you have settle in well. We all know that the easy part (no way!!) is to get the PR, the hardest (sometimes only...) is to get settle in quickly and smoothly.

    Seriously I really appreciate your sharing of your experiences during the initial part of your settlement and that is the kind of useful information that hopeful folks like us need. We chinese have a saying 'You depend on your family at home, you depend on your friends when you are out'. The people at the motel really fit into good friends category.

    Take care and keep us posted...


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