New Zealand is Home

For the last three weeks we’ve been back in New Zealand (and briefly Brisbane) catching up with friends and family. It’s been a very busy, but fun time and it is certainly nice to catch up with everyone in person again. The trip has led to some interesting (and no doubt reassuring for some family members) observations.

When I left New Zealand, just over a year ago, I thought that I would be quite happy to live overseas for the next 5-10 years and apart from missing family I wouldn’t really miss New Zealand all that much. That seemed to be pretty true during the last year in Dublin. I was never consciously homesick or wishing to be back in New Zealand. Skype, VoIP and the Internet do a pretty good job of letting us stay in touch with family and friends, so while I was looking forward to visiting New Zealand I wasn’t expecting my thoughts and opinions about ‘home’ to be significantly changed.

With that in mind, I found it quite strange to feel much more comfortable, at ease and ‘at home’ back in New Zealand than I do in Dublin! Lots of little things about Dublin that I’ve not previously noticed or been bothered by suddenly came to mind as I enjoyed New Zealand suburbia. I’m pretty sure that this is mostly just due to New Zealand being where I grew up, and hence being much more familiar to me than Dublin but it I found it an interesting observation none the less.

You shouldn’t take that to mean that we’ll be immediately moving away from Dublin and rushing back to New Zealand. We both have good jobs in Dublin, and I struggle to think of where I would get a similarly rewarding (financially and intellectually) job in New Zealand. Add to that the fact that there is still lots of Europe that we want to see and the friends that we’ve made in Dublin and we’ll almost definitely being staying till April 2009. I say almost just to leave ourselves some wiggle room, you never know what interesting opportunities or events might cause a change of plans! After April 2009, who knows, maybe Dublin, maybe not. It’s too far ahead to plan in detail at the moment.

So, visiting New Zealand and Brisbane was an excellent holiday, well worth the 24+ hours of flying and time off work. Apart from the obvious highlight of seeing our families and friends, I also particularly enjoyed:

  • The sunshine and good weather (mostly in Tauranga, but also in Hamilton and Auckland).
  • New Zealand suburbia, the grass and trees in particular. Dublin is quite dark, dirty and full of concrete/brick by comparison.

Right now I’m in Sydney, preparing to spend two weeks in the office here getting to know my colleagues in Sydney a bit better and getting a feel for the city. Kat is currently somewhere over the Pacific, en route to LA and eventually Dublin.

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4 Comments.

  1. Hey Matt! Good to hear you guys had a good time in Brisbane. Hope those Aussies are treating you well! Was great to catch up with you and Kat while you were here. I got the RSS reader on my igoogle page so picked up on this post reasonably quickly. Anyway, have a safe flight home and hopefully Kat gets back safe and sound too!

  2. Enjoyed that blog! I live in hope.

  3. NZ misses you too Matt. Trust you to come back while I was overseas for once! 😉
    Catch up for a beer next time, eh?

  4. Greig,

    Yes, great planning that we managed to swap hemispheres!

    Definitely up for a beer next time.