We were in our local second hand book shop today, having a bit of a yarn with the owner, and he asked us how long we had been in New Zealand. A quick look at the date, and I was blindsided by the fact that we have now been here for over a month (a month yesterday, in fact...)
Time has absolutely flown by; it doesn't seem two minutes since we were in the UK, but on the other hand, it feels like we have been here forever. The idea that Lower Hutt, Wellington, New Zealand is "home" now is really settling in, and, more importantly, feels *right*.
We know our way around now, we know the train and bus timetables pretty well, and know where the best shops are (though we are still discovering new ones (I found a print shop that will do scanning for less than $10 today!)). We know how much to budget for food, and where to go for the cheapest veg in the market (different stalls have different prices for the different types of veg, so it isn't a case of just going to one stall; we get our onions from one, potatoes from another, kumera and chinese radish from a third etc....), and we know how much we spend each week on veg, meat and other sundries.
I've been so heartened by the friendliness of everyone around; so many people are happy to stop for a chat, whether it is the driver on the bus, the owner of the shop, or the person serving us coffee (and we have found a *fantastic* coffee shop called Butlers - in fact, it is a choclatier that has a coffee part to it; every coffee you buy comes with a free chocolate (and it is an amazing chocolate!)); they are genuinely interested in us, but are also so proud of where they are (the bookshop owner has been in Lower Hutt for 60 years, the lady serving us coffee was telling us the best places to live when we were first looking round the area); it helps us realise that we have made the right choice!
I'm still waiting to find out when I'm starting work, which is a little bit frustrating, but as the reason behind the delay is that they are sorting out a contract for me, and I will be the first person in the company to *have* a contract, I can't complain too loudly! (also, the later I start work, the less time I have to spend on the Calendar Club stand - whilst I don't mind doing it, it is mindnumbingly boring!)