It’s Official

Two days ago I received my New Zealand Visa, a big blue sticker in my passport that allows me to work in “any employment except permanent employment.”  In other words, I have one year to work and then I must go.  However, with so many Kiwis headed off to make it big in Australia, I don’t think they’d mind too terribly if I stuck around.  The package also included my international insurance card and a small handbook titled, Your Essential Guide with information about “the Wonderful World of New Zealand.”  In addition to my flight, departing Washington DC on Jan 24th and arriving in Auckland on Jan 26th, I now have all the necessary documents for my year in New Zealand!  Next up… paying off the CCs for the ticket, insurance, and other associated expenses.

In order to save up for my move down under, I relocated from the Virgin Islands to suburban Washington DC in November to bunk up with the folks for the first time since I left for college soon after my 18th birthday.  This was a scary thought to have while lying on my floatie sipping a rum and coke with my friends at the beach. However, the arrangement has worked out just fine.  It’s interesting to see the new dynamic around the house some seven-odd years later.  I find myself excited to whip up some lunch and have it ready in time to watch Who Wants to Be a Millionaire at 12:30pm with my mom and sister.  I am not one for routines, but a little consistency can’t hurt as I prepare for my uncertain future halfway across the world.

I spend most of my time in the room that my parents designated as mine when my they moved out to Haymarket, Virginia a few years ago.  The walls are the same sky blue color as my childhood room although the trim with the ducks has been omitted.  On the familiar walls hang framed pictures from my youth and a cork-board covered with photo booth snapshots, tickets to my high school plays, the entry bracelet for our post-graduation all-nighter, and other memorabilia.  The clutter on the floor below reminds me that it is actually my room and not just a shrine to my youth.  I keep fixating on the Globemaster 12-inch diameter globe on the dresser.  You have to hunch down below it and look up to see New Zealand, all the way down in the southwest Pacific.  Judging by my finger measurements, flying to Fiji, Samoa, Tonga, or Australia is just about as far as flying from Washington DC to Miami… totally doable, right?

One month out, it is time to play the waiting game.  I am beginning to look into apartments and jobs, and learning the difference between writing a Resume and a CV.  While researching, I am stockpiling important facts about New Zealand.  For instance, New Zealand is the first country to see the Sun, has 12.6 sheep for every human, and has the southernmost capital city in the world.  Look out for the sure-to-come blog post where MarkontheMap has a curious encounter with a herd of sheep.

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