November 2008


Sleeping heavily once asleep and that seems to be my manifestation of jetlag.  We went climbing today at one of the local indoor walls and despite not going for almost a year things went pretty well.  The routes are fun and the mock rock is pretty good to climb on.  Lots of natural features to work your way up (K is so much better at that than I am – I just never manage to trust my body to keep me up against gravity).  Now my arms hurt.

Then we had food at Denny’s.  Yep, they have Denny’s here too.  Managed to avoid it in all the time I’ve spent in the states; ate there within 5 days of living in NZ.

remember remember

And in a music related note: the amazingly good Remember Remember album has been released digitally (the ‘real’ version isn’t released until the 17th).  I checked with some of the local music shops here and no one has heard of them so there was no chance of picking up the cd so I relented and bought the digital version.  I would completely recommend it and you can find links to buy it here.  The Rock Action website itself has more information and direct sales.  Samples from childhood toys, looped instruments, catchy, organic and incredibly fun.  Go buy it.

So I like New Zealand so far.  Though there are a few changes to get used to.  For example, bank charges.  You get charged for everything.  Everything.  Want to take your own money out from an ATM.  That costs you.  Want to use another banks ATM?  Even more.  Cheques, setting up a direct debit, paying a bill, checking your balance on line…all charged.  Not impressed.  Still, have one now.

Mobile phones don’t come for free either.  And cds are really expensive.  It’s not like it is back home!

All told though, everyone is friendly and interested.  Went out for drinks last night and met some of Ks new friends.  Been mooching around Chch most of today, checking out the shopping and the food and then taking a wander through the botanical gardens.  Plus we got the dvd player working which makes us both happy.

And now we’re trying to sort out our holiday for the next week and a bit.  Should be fun.  Going to start sorting out my Nepal photos soon and will start posting them as and when they’re ready.

About 20 mins into the mammoth 27 hour plane journey to get me here I heard the immortal and feared words come over the tannoy:

“If there’s a medical doctor on board please would they make themselves known to the cabin staff…”

Great.  It didn’t catch me entirely unaware though as the woman with the problem was sitting 2 seats in front of me and I’d been eavesdropping.  That explains why I alerted them to my presence so fast.  She had a problem getting a blood sugar monitor to work and wanted some advice on insulin dosing for her partner.  I could do that.

Then strangely the connection from Aukland to Christchurch turned round as we were taxiing to head back to the terminal as a passenger was unwell and needed to get off.  Didn’t ask for a doctor that time though.

Aside from all that the flight was tolerable (Air New Zealand are pretty good all told, plus the nice lady at check in didn’t charge me for the huge excess I had on my weight allowance) and I managed to stay awake for the rest of the day after arrival.  Currently my body is telling me it’s confused and wants to know what time it is and whether I should be tired or not.

On first glance, Christchurch reminds me of small town America, which is no bad thing.  Supermarkets are different and buying unknown food will take a while to get used to.  But since yesterday we have acquired a sofa, kitchen table and chairs, brand new bed and a dvd played.  Just need a bookcase and a few kitchen things now.

Tomorrow I’m meeting the NZ medical council representative to go over my paperwork.  Then I’m off to set up a bank account, get a new driving licence and sort out a new phone.  This will involve me having to figure out how the buses work – I don’t do buses.  Plus until I start work later this month and get some money K is paying for everything.  Ha ha.  I’m now her house husband apparently.

And for those of you slow on the uptake – I’ve moved to New Zealand.

P.s. Well done America.  Good voting choice.