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Amber and Travis’s Great Adventures Update:

We have officially been in NZ for a month. It seems like home already even without furniture. We are in job-hunting mode. With our working holiday visas we are now eligible to work any non-professional jobs we like. For me that means subbing, T. has sworn he doesn’t want to do IT, but has yet to choose an alternative field.

We are looking for a new place to live and a car this week. The place we are renting now is great, but it was sold two weeks after we moved in, plus its $300 a week, which is more then we can handle at this point. Since we will have a car soon we are looking at Auckland’s suburbs. There seem to be a ton of rooms for rent for $100-150 a week. The challenge will be finding a house that will allow a couple. Most of these places are 4-6 bedroom homes, so renting to a couple is less then desirable. When we were renting out rooms in Austin I never considered couples. What goes around comes around I guess.

Our weakest link at this point is our property in Austin. Not only has one side not been rented, but the manager is still asking us for money to fix things. Today it was the back doors that need to be replaced and a possibility of mold in side B. If this was a used car that I had bought I’d feel cheated finding out that everything was broken, but since it’s a house I just get sad. So for the last two months we have been paying for repairs and the entire mortgage, and it’s eating through our savings quickly. We are not in the red yet, but we will definitely be spending a good chunk of time this year building up some savings. Good thing we are going to be in NZ awhile, vacations can wait.

Emotionally T. and I are surviving. Since we are hording money, but still without work or transportation we are around each other 24/7. Some days are worse than others, but considering all the stuff hanging over our heads right now I’d say we are doing really well. We’ve gone to some meetup groups, and met some good people. The people here are really friendly compared to Austin.

Things we learned this week:
• You must flag down a bus, or it will not stop.
• Fireworks are acceptable fun at all times of the day, in the city or out.
• Every Sunday at the racetrack there is a huge used car fair. Around 3,000 people bring their car to be sold.
• Homeless people talk to much, and much to loud. At least he knows he’s an alcoholic, that’s the first step right?
• Having your groceries delivered is the greatest service ever. Having to haul the groceries takes all the joy out of food.
• New Zealand does not use checks at all. Everything is transferred between peoples’ accounts. This is going to make working with our Wells Fargo bank very difficult.
• The greatest crime in the world is washing your passport. Even though it looks fine, just a little worn, people of all occupations will chastise you for it.

That’s all for now. I keep on telling myself that this move is supposed to be hard otherwise everyone would do it. We can only go up from here, I hope.

Miss everyone.

Amber and Travis


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