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Monday, January 24, 2011

Leaving Sydney and arrival in Wellington

To bring you up to speed on what happened after we sold our house in Robertson, NSW, here's the intro:
left house Nov 1, after watching wordly goods depart in shipping container. Packed car and shifted to Mischa's folks' place in Sydney; two days later, off we headed for a 6 week road trip through NSW, Victoria, Kangaroo Island / South Australia, and Western Australia. To cut a long story short there: 12000km, lots of driving, plenty of scenic wonders, lovely visit and stay with WA family, a coughing dog and back for Christmas. Coughing dog (Lola) getting worse and to cut that long story short: cancer operation New Years Eve and she's doing fine now that windpipe is not full of pus. Ugh. Hair is growing back too - hooray!
We finally flew out of Sydney on Jan 19, and here we are: Aotearoa!
Carol's sister Nessa and her husband Mark were in the same boat - needing somewhere to stay for a few months - so we have all rented a house they found in Tawa, a suburb about 15km north of Wellington. It's a 20 minute walk to the olds' place. For all those Australians with appalling knowledge of NZ - capital city, bottom of the North Island -get ya butts over here and check out this gorgeous city. Wellington has changed a lot in the last few years, and its now a funky cafe city within a  fabulous marine and subtemperate landscape. Today began wintry and ended summery (if you don't like the weather, come back in half an hour).

Day two in Wgtn we got cracking to set up this new life and headed off in our borrowed car to get a mattress so we had something to sleep on (always good), a PO box, a couple of phone connections. We also picked up a parking ticket which we didn't want, 'cause we were in lala land and never saw the parking station that we parked right in front of while we bought the mattress. One of the great things about Wellington is that you can often drive up and park outside where you want to go - but watch out for those parking ticket swoopers.

Next day we went car shopping and accidently found ourselves test driving a new car. How did THAT happen? Sanity prevailed though as we reminded each other of our car budget, ahem, as we drove home in the borrowed car. Have subsequently bought a Mitsubishi Airtrek wagon (no, we've never heard of it either). Red, turbo, comfy, fastidiously maintained by the first owner - and we both liked it, (amazing), so it was a winner. John and Sheila - bought it at Mexted Motors in Tawa: drove down there, parked beside it, got out, stood and looked at it and said to each other 'what about this one?'. A few minutes later, 'twas ours.

Have begun to look for a place to buy as we're only in the rental until end of May. The rented house is a fine, big, modern house and we back onto bush going up a big hill and then paddocks away to the sea. Lots of local bush walks very close by. Nowhere in NZ is far from the sea and Carol has signed up for a night school course in surf and rock fishing. If we don't find work we can live on fish.

The large Thomas family are delighted to have us around and we're all getting used to the newness of - not visiting, living here! Yesterday, bought some herbs to bung in our tiddly bit of front yard and that is not something you do when you're visiting. Each day we settle a bit more.

Michelle is coping well in this not so foreign country and thank gawd for Skype. Our Skype name is michelle-reid and once we get a landline communication will be a bit clearer. We're working off our mobiles until then.

Am getting the hang of this blog stuff! Golly. Off to tackle some images.