Thursday, December 19, 2013

The Freedom of New Zealand

So after just over three months of public transport last week we finally acquired our wheels.

Never have I felt so elated to have a vehicle!  The public transport here is very good, and we'd managed fine walking and on the buses, but there were becoming more and more times when a car would make things easier or possible.

Alan, who helped me collect the race car and Ducati, said he had a Toyota Ipsum for sale when we were en route home last week.  Turns out it was just about the smallest seven seater available and for $2k with 200k clicks on the odometer it was kinda just what we needed.

The first day of driving was more of an occasion than when I got my first set of wheels aged 17.  The sense of freedom was almost overwhelming.

And this was multiplied when the bike passed its entry examination, WoF test and brake test and was fully registered on Saturday. 

If having a car gave me a sense of freedom then riding a bike was pure elation.  Nothing beats having these roads to yourself!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Christmas Prep, Kiwi Style

We're a little late with the Christmas prep this year.  A lack of car and an overload of boxes is our excuse!

But last Thursday (Dec12) was day two of car ownership (more to come on that one) and so with Alfie at school me and the girls ventured over to The Warehouse to grab a last minute bargain.

We've always been a family which insisted on a real tree,  but seeing as how late we were, plus the fact it kinda felt like a fake Christmas, I opted to max out the fake.  So our free is not only plastic, but also white!

I grabbed Alfie from school (he has flexible hours which is great!) and we set about decorating our new tree with bargain sacrificial decs.  The whole lot cost less than $80, lights included.

What you see now is a tree missing about a third of its decs lol.  Come xmas eve I'll redecorate and add the candy canes and tree chocs. Oh yeah!

Then on Monday I took Alfie to a Christmas story time at the library. It was after dinner, and so everyone was invited to wear pyjamas.  It was a fantastic, the kiwi 12 days of Christmas is hilarious.

And after stories and songs all the kids mad a decoration for their tree.

And so with a lovely evening behind us, and now feeling very festive, we went to the Roxy for a choc dipped ice cream, followed by a Christmas shop at the supermarket.  

I actually cannot wait!  Largely cos I'm making Jamies Christmas Bombe for dessert!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Santa Claus Is Coming To Town

Last Saturday (Dec 7) was the christmas parade in central Wellington.

We learnt two things that day.  Esme is a proper Batsford and gets MASS EXCITES about Christmas and Alfie is Kevin the teenager with numerous comments about being bored and wanting to go home.

After the parade everyone files over the bridge, alongside a group of lads tightrope (ok, ratchet strap) walking, to the park where they had a big stage and santa and songs and Christmas.

It was a lovely afternoon, even though doing it all in sunshine is very odd and hearing an antipodean santa singing just had me waiting for a rendition of Kevin Bloody Wilsons 'Hey, Santa Claus You C*nt'.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Dream Garage

With the house full of boxes everything moved extremely fast and before I knew it I was due to collect the bike and racecar in Friday (December 6).

I had seen a tow truck opposite Alfie's school a number of times and when I spotted he had a custom ute with a V8 under the hood on a nice set of Cragars I figured he could be just the chap for the job of moving them.

A phone call was made, Tash got Friday off work, I spent Thursday night sorting the garage so everything could fit and before I knew it it was 1pm and I was hopping up into his truck.

His name's Alan.  Alan is awesome.  He helped me load the racecar, and having decided it would be better to make two trips offered to collect and deliver the bike on his own on Monday.  A wing mirror had been broken off the Ducati, but stopped at a bike shop to see if I could get a replacement bolt.

On the journey back we made phone calls to try and book it in for its assessment, and by the time we'd got back a plan was already in place for him to collect the bike again on Thursday and drop it off at the vtnz for its assessment.  I should then be able to ride it home. Happy Days!!

Until he collects it (tomorrow) I have what pretty much looks like my dream garage!

I was worried the two vehicles would fill the garage but there is loads of space.  Once the salvation army take a load of stuff out of it too it will be awesome.  Compressor is already connected, it should be an awesome place to tinker.

Did We Really Pack That Much!?!

Last week our container was emptied, checked, and after we paid our sum to customs and MAFF our boxes came to the house aboard a 20ft container.

It only took a few hours to unload but destroyed the nice spacious empty house we previously enjoyed.  Its nice to have our stuff though, even though I think there's a chunk we're still going to end up throwing away.  Nicest of all was the arrival of the sofa and proper kitchen knives.

Alfie was of course overjoyed to get his bin man bin and all his other bin man trucks back! 

Family Footy

Lots to catch up with at the moment!  Sundays ago (December 1) we had box seats for the Wellington Phoenix. 

The company Tash is contracting at have a box there as they are a sponsor,  and this game was chosen as their family day.

We'd spent the morning buying plants and seeds for our deck and veggie patch, enjoyed a beer on said deck, and to finish the day at the football was perfect.

They had entertainers for the kids, face painters, lovely food, and of course a free bar.  Even the team mascots came from that room!

As for the football, it was rubbish, and a very boring 0-0 was played out before us.   Both Alfie and Esme loved it though.

Tash has a new contract with a different company starting in January, I just hope they aren't a bunch of rugby freaks!