Home sweet home, that is where the heart is.

Well, we have finally arrived home after a long stint in London. Why? Because the grass is always greener….. Isn’t it? (Or should that be ‘Innit’?) I guess time will tell on that one! So here is a little rant, comparison, run down on what I think so far.

We’ve been home for just over a month now and we are still just trying to find our feet and settle in. We definitely didn’t time it right arriving in winter and especially after leaving 30 degree plus heat on our travels home. But we are making the most of the sunny winter days and filling it with walking (OK not so much now we have succumb to the NZ way and own a car – that’s another post). Oh and we’ve been keeping ourselves busy enough with doing those chores that could not be done remotely from London for the new build. Now we are just waiting for building to start!

And then there’s eating all the NZ food you miss, like pies, lolly cake, chocolate bickies and cakes and fish n chips and more pies. And making some of the old favs which I never seemed to bother in the UK (mainly cause they didn’t have some of the ingredients).

One thing we have noticed is just how helpful people are in NZ. Things just seem so much faster when you want to arrange for someone to do something for you and you don’t get passed from person to person, and people actually appear to be happy to help you. And then there is the down side of lack of produce or ingredients of what we were used to being available in the UK. And not to mention the sheer shock of the cost of some of it. But some of that might be easily fixed – we’ll just have to try and grow it ourselves!

After living away for so long and when visiting I had developed a perception that things in NZ are expensive and that your money did not appear to go as far. Perhaps that might still be right. I’m still undecided on some things. But I can say we have found some real bargains, which might have to do with winter sales at the moment. But then there is the cost of dairy and meat which to me is ridiculous as pretty much all of it is made here. So I guess like any country if you shop around you can find some great deals and all in all it always depends on how much you are willing to spend!

But the other greatest thing is just how friendly or trusting people are. The one that amazed both of us the most in the first couple of days when we were taking the odd bus ride, is the bus drivers. On not one but two ocassions the bus driver has left the bus running on the side of the street with passengers in it and said “I’ll be back in a minute”. And off he or she has toddled for probably 3-5 minutes and then back on they have got. What’s that about!! My first thought was no one is bothering to steal the bus. Could definitely see that happening in London! But the other thing bus drivers do here is say “hello” and sometimes, “how are you today”. Now I know that doesn’t happen in London. Oh and pretty much everyone here thanks the bus driver when they get off, whether they exit at the front or just shout when they exit from the rear.

So there you have it, my first thoughts on being back.

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