Christchurch: May 2012 update

I’ve not written in a while, primarily because I’ve been quite busy with life, but also I’ve not been far, or out of Canterbury in the last two weeks, but this is life here, so at times I don’t remember to write about the normal things that go on.

Sunday will mark 5 months since my arrival in New Zealand. I know I’ve said it many times, but it really has flown by! Summer seemed like two minutes ago. I’ve managed to fit on so much. I’ve done three big road trips, visited three other big cities (Auckland, Dunedin and Wellington), done a bungy, swam with dolphins, and embraced the rugby culture! I’ve ticked quite a bit off my bucket list.

Even just being in NZ is a major thing for me. I remember wanting to complete my final placement at Uni in NZ, but I was a poor student at the time, so that went out the window! Sometimes I have to remind myself that I am here and what an achievement it is. It took a lot of planning and hard work, but I am glad I did it. I’ve now gone to the point where a possible extension in my job is on offer, if I want it. So I have a lot of thinking to do. Ive become quite comfortable at work and in my role. I’ve learnt a lot and feel I’ve developed professionally. I guess it’s the conflict between being settled and travelling.

I recently bought a new map of the world and put sticky dots on the places I’ve been, and it looks pretty scarce: http://static.travbuddy.com/flash/countries_map.swf?id=6273820

I recently read a travel blog about someone who travelled from San Francisco to Mexico. It took 49 hours and a mental about of bus and train changes, but it cost under $100. This sounds amazing! It’s another thing on my list – cross a country border on public (ground) transport.

I guess I may know what I think in the next few months perhaps! Apart from that, as I said I’ve been quite busy. I went to a race track day with church a few weeks ago. It was amazing!! Like real life top gear. I’ve always wanted to get in an old battered up car and whizz around at top speeds.

The weather has been up and down recently. It’s got very cold lately and most of the time 
I am going to bed with a hot water bottle and wheatbag. Though on Sunday, temperatures got to 22 degrees! I went out in my winter boots and coat and soon was stripping off. Other people were walking around the mall is flip flops and shorts.

I have recently invested in merinos, which are a type of wool (merino wool) which regulates body temperature and are fantastic for winter. Though I thought it made me invincible to the cold when I just worn that and a cardi – not so!

In other news. I’ve joined the gym near work and home. It’s a gorgeous gym, but it’s so hard to get motivated to go. I have to go 2x per week to get my money’s worth. I’ve been 3 times do far in two weeks. Will see how long I can keep it up for. Running in the dark and cold doesn’t appeal to me anymore.

This weekend is a long weekend (Thanks Queenie!) and I am heading to Queenstown via lake Tekapo, where I went in March. It will be nice to see the lake in winter. The scenery around it is awesome. Views of mount cook and stunning blue water. I’ve also booked to jump off a cliff (as you do!) in Queenstown on Monday #excited!

In two weeks my Irish rugby boys arrive in Christchurch for their match against the all blacks. I got mum to post me an ulster flag, which I slightly defaced, but I reckon it’s not he who shouts the loudest. It’s he who has the biggest flag .. Wins! (chance would be a fine thing!) I having a queens birthday tea party on work on Thursday, and I am rather excited. I’ve been spending time making decorations and baking with my residents in the care home. I love how I get paid to do that! 🙂 For all my UK based friends. Enjoy the warm long weekend. Missing you all and the pimms and lenomade and picnics in the park.

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