Monday, June 28, 2010

I may actually melt

I just looked at the weather forecasts for London and Moscow for the next week or so.... neither of them are predicted to have a day time temperature lower than 25'C (Moscow had a 31'C in there somewhere!) and they were both hovering around 18'C at night.

Despite all my claims that I'm secretly a lizard and I will love the warm, it's going to be a bit of a shock coming from NZ winter. The thermomether on the wall next to me says we're almost at 16'C, and that's pretty close to the heater. I'm starting to wish I had left myself several empty days for when I first arrive! Never mind. I'll just make Damn sure that I pack my skimpiest clothing for all non-work related times!
*I'll going to melt. I am actually going to melt.*

At least the humidity in Moscow was consistently quite low. London on the other hand is going to be hot and sticky.

Friday, June 25, 2010

I am MacGyver!

Today was... well I feel accomplished sitting here with my parents internet connection!

So lets start at the start... We got up to watch the football at 3 in the morning (we set the alarm wrong and missed the first half, which is probably a good thing!) which meant back to bed about 4ish... Up at 6.45 to get ready to leave the house by 7.30 to make my check-in by 7.45/7.50.

Most of the way to the airport I realise that I've left my handbag behind. And my jacket and scarf, not that they really matter in comparison. By this point it's already almost 7.50, so no way we could get back to pick it up. After discussion during the last portion we figure that it will have to be couriered to me- it's got, well, pretty much everything I need in it, except my ticket (I know, I'm a genius. Yay for cabbin luggage bags!). So I leap out of the van and race to check-in (freaking out after the other nights expose on domestic check-in procedures I was sure I was going to be asked for ID!) and this was fine, until I realised that I had excess luggage..... and no access to money. Then J magically apparates behind me and gives me a bit of cash to tide me over, which was amazing. I had raced after them as they drove off because I realised that this was going to be an issue, but was too slow and they drove off- suffice to say I was mighty surprised to see him! But very, very glad!

With a few minutes to boarding I realise that I also have my passport, albeit buried VERY deeply in my cabbin luggage, so set off for a possible bank within the airport. Apparently Wellington airport doesn't have any actual bank branches in it (actually there IS a Kiwibank/Postshop but it was unattended) or at least according to the airport staff there weren't. Certainly there weren't any of mine, or any other bank who might possibly be able to do something amazing like get money from my account.

Boarding happens, flight goes without a hitch. Rather boring without an mp3 player though, it's not like you can talk on those little planes. So. Get in to Gisborne.

My mother had called earlier that morning to say she would be late, so I should just head around to my brothers new flat, which is only a couple of blocks from the airport (actually really is that close), and meet her there. She couldn't remember his exact address, but I figured I could just text him. Great plan when I had my cellphone. Not so great when it's in a different city.

One of the many awesome points of ridiculously large families is that you kinda get to know a lot of people. That same brother, I happened to remember, knew the guy who runs (I think?) the cafe in the airport. So I went and had a chat to him, and after some confusion, we hit on talking about the same person (I suspect this may have happened sooner if we weren't talking over the top of an espresso machine), and he had an idea that he knew which one was my brothers new flat. He was pretty sure he had seen his truck outside it. So, he said I could just throw my bags behind the counter and wander over (really a ten minute walk, even for me) and check it out, which seemed like a plan. My only hesitation was that my mother might just turn up at the airport, as I personally thought she had a bit more time up her sleeve than she realised when she said she would be late. But then I figured when it's only two blocks from the airport she would have to drive past me anyway, so off I went.

After turning down two offers of rides (I guess I really have got a backpacker look, walking out of an airport with only my cabin luggage!) the other guy from the cafe (not the one I recognised initially) pulls up in a truck and offers me a lift. I figure he knows he is offering me a ride which is due to end in about a block and a half, and it is now raining (rather steadily even). And I get to climb right up in to the cab :) Soooooo truck ride for about a minute, chitchat, and then I leap out and go to explore this property which is possibly my brothers new flat. Luckily I know his dog, and she recognises me, so it's all good, and the door is unlocked as promised. (You can do that with a dog like her.) Hooray I'm finally where I'm supposed to be, and all my stuff is safe, possibly barring my handbag, which I eventually realise I would have left sitting on the deck!

Raid the kitchen, use the bathroom....... oh fuck. No handle on this side of the door. You have *got* to be kidding me. After eyeing up the window, and examining the bit where it has clearly had the lock wrenched open before, presumably from a previous comparable situation, I decide I'm really not athletic enough to climb though it anyway. And I have no idea what might be underneath on the other side.

On my person available for use:
-Usual clothing, i.e. nothing very sturdy.
-Watch. Old, wind up ladies watch. Decidedly on the delicate side.
-$10 note.
- NZ passport.
- Boarding pass.
- Reciept for excess luggage.


What would MacGyver do?


Fold up the boarding pass into a credit-card sized piece of thicker paper, and slip it in the door crack.


As I walk out of the bathroom announcing that "I'm a fucking genius" to the house in general I hear my mothers voice "What?"

You had better believe I felt deserving of that airport coffee when we went back to get my luggage!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010


My British passport has finally arrived! Yay!!! I can now actually legally DO what I'm planning. I mean technically I could have just turned up on a visitors visa, but then I couldn't interview for any decent jobs because I wouldn't have the paperwork. And I would have had to do some dubious travelling when it finally did turn up, in order to be in the right country on the right passport........... so all in all I am very pleased it is here!

Also pleased that I appear to have suceeded in convincing a big international bank to open an account for me which I can use once I get to the UK, which will be nifty. Now I just need to figure out the logistics of getting money there when I can't actually activate the account until I'm in the UK. Hmmmm. Possibly I just put it all on one of these cash card things through Visa and my bank, and then I can take it out again when I get there.... ahh I'll figure something out.


Wellington is fun. I have too much stuff here, I'm contemplating burning it. I don't *really* want my university notes from the last five years. It's not like they're useful or anything.

Thats all for now. Two weeks to go!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Getting excited!

On Monday I put all my furniture in to storage, and said my farewells to Dunedin. I have to say, moving furniture in the rain in Dunedin winter isn't really very endearing to the city :/ Luckily Dunedin is full of people I love anyway, so I don't really need to miss the icy rain and frosty mornings. Wellington is noticably warmer.

So now I'm in Wellington (after a two hour delay in my flight on Monday) saying my farewells here and frantically organising last minute paperwork, job applications, and so on. At least I've booked my bed in a crazy backpackers for when I arrive! I'm so pleased with them- they're called The Barmy Badger, their home page has an ode to a badger, and they have two dogs living on the premises :)

Great news on the passport front- I called them on Monday and they said that they would be working on it that afternoon, and I should have it within ten days! It will get to my parents before I do if they're right about that :o

Tonight I'm off to hang out with my dirty commie boys (I love you really!) and watch movies, and have pizza from the Med..... Mmmmm Med pizza. Best pizza in Wellington. Now I just need to visit Peoples Coffee and Abrakebabra and I will be ready to leave.

After looking at my current internet cafe bill, I have deemed it time to wander about town for an hour before I go and see people.