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I've been firmly ensconced in New Zealand's capital city for 3 weeks now. For the first week I was delighted to have the company of Fiona and Jenichka and we toured the highlights of the city, taking in the planitarium, botanical gardens, a bit of Te Papa national museum and a tour round the New Zealand parliament. We even went to see The Da Vinci Code at the magnificent Embassy Theatre (it was a bit rubbish really... Cars is a much better film :-)).
Sadly, they then had to depart to continue their whirlwind tour of these isles and so I had to get sorted. Through one of the numerous temp agencies I've signed up with I got a job setting up a new Toy department in a shop just outside of town. Together with another English bloke I put together the flat packed shelves (thankfully without any IKEA diagram hell) then over the next couple of days had to get all the toys layed out correctly, which required more brainpower than I would have predicted as there were specific rules about how they can be arranged and you've still got to try and make them look good and fit them into the available space. This work was only for a week however and after that I was back looking for more and managed to find a job selling furniture at an expo over the weekend. I'm still looking for something a bit more permanent.
My other big job was to find somewhere to live, as staying in a hostel for extended periods of time is less than ideal. After a couple of weeks of searching I finally found a room in a house right in the centre of town. It's rather cold and the kitchen's tiny but the people are cool and I've got my own room and unlimited internet access (and at the equivilent of £44/week + bills how does this compare to a room in England's capital city? Imogen? Nicki? :-D). There are three other people currently sharing the house, all of them in their early twenties: Sheryly, who works in a coffee shop, Jimmy, who works as a bank teller, and Alex, a Canadian girl in her third year of architecture at the nearby university. Despite having only one proper student, the whole place has a definite studenty feel, right down to the pile of unwashed dishes I'm going to have to do something about...
Should any of you wish to contact me then, I now have an address:
66 Abel Smith Street
My home phone number is +64 4 3813740. Please remember that New Zealand is 11 hours ahead of England!