Monday, October 23, 2006

LIFE: Destination: New Zealand

vag‧a‧bond  /ˈvag-uh-bond/
1. wandering from place to place without any settled home; nomadic: a vagabond tribe.
2. leading an unsettled or carefree life.
3. disreputable; worthless; shiftless.
4. of, pertaining to, or characteristic of a vagabond: vagabond habits.
5. having an uncertain or irregular course or direction: a vagabond voyage.

Yeah, I've been feeling that way... well, for months now, really. Feels like we've been moving to New Zealand for years now. And really, we have, since we decided way back in August 2005 that this was what we wanted to do next. Been shipping our stuff since January; cleared out our house in July, moved out in August. Tomorrow, finally, we're off, flying out of San Francisco into the abyss. It's been a long time coming... Nearly seven weeks since we pulled out of Oregon, I quit my job and we started down the long road. Lots of time to freak out.

Still, I'm glad I didn't decide to quit work Friday and fly to New Zealand on a Monday, allowing for this relaxed time to say goodbye to my homeland for a while. The last two months or so have been great - we had our America MegaTrek, saw many sweeping vistas and epic sights, I got to spend a ton more time with Peter than I did when I was working, and was able to catch up with many an old friend. It's been a fine interlude, but real life is lurking in the sidelines as our savings account shrinks and we realize that yes, one of us really should start working again soon. New Zealand will be an excellent transformative experience for us, and great to be closer to family there, but it also really means that daily life gets back in gear after weeks of being ... well, vagabonds. If not vagrants.

What happens next, I really don't know. We rely on the kindness of my in-laws to start (much like we've relied on the kindness of my parents as home base since early September). Theoretically, we'll find new jobs and eventually get our own place and hop on the great merry-go-round of life again, except this time I'll be deep in the antipodes and after nearly 9 years I'll be the one with the foreign accent in this marriage.

The rest is unknown --- and while it's scary as hell (there's been many a sleepless night lately), it's also kind of invigorating. I'm not sure what form this blog will take in New Zealand, but I hope to keep posting something, even if it's just a bewildered cranky American expatriate's take on a strange new world.

Thanks for reading and I'll see you in the next hemisphere.

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