The ups and downs of New Zealand

I waited patiently for my bag in Wellington airport after flying for what seemed like five minutes from Auckland.

I felt strangely nervous and out of place travelling alone once again.

Just an hour before, I had left my partner, Ben, in Auckland airport where he would catch a flight to LA for work.

We had just finished an amazing four-week tour of New Zealand together. I’d had the time of my life driving round both islands and experiencing white (and black) water rafting, skiing, abseiling, skydiving and canyon swinging.


Skydiving over Lake Wanaka. One of the best experiences of my life.

It had all gone too fast. Before I knew it, I was saying my goodbyes and going back to Wellington to find work before my trip to Thailand in November.

I had come back down to Earth with a thump.

I felt a pang of loneliness and a knot in my stomach forming when I stepped outside the arrivals lounge. I told myself;

Take a deep breath and shake it off. Everything is going to be OK…

I caught the shuttle bus into Wellington city centre and I headed towards the YHA hostel where I would spend the next three nights.

Eventually I started to feel more settled and comfortable. I made a few friends, got some groceries to last me a few days and started to venture round the sights of Wellington.


A view of the city from Wellington’s Botanic Gardens.

Although it feels like a decade since I first got here, that was just over a week ago.

And despite my best efforts, my plan to find work hasn’t gone too well. OK, I’ll be honest, it hasn’t got me anywhere. Result being…

Feeling totally out of my depth.

At first, I had a hard time understanding why things weren’t exactly working out the way I had hoped. Was my CV not good enough? Had I put enough effort into the 40+ job applications I had gone through?

Then I had a light bulb moment. Just the other day, I realised that I had spent the last two weeks stressing, going round in circles in my head everyday and it was making me feel awful.

I had to let go of plan A and start working on a plan B.

I decided that I’m going to stop job searching here in Wellington and go to Thailand two weeks earlier than planned to finish my 13 month trip on a high.

I didn’t waste any time. I started looking at flights straight away and making alternative plans with my travel buddy who I would be meeting in Bangkok.

After sorting everything out, I’ve now got just under two weeks to wait until I leave New Zealand.

I’ve thought to myself, time and time again, that I could feel sad about leaving when I’ve still got another 10 months on my visa but I want to see this experience as a positive one.

I feel so lucky when I think about my time here. I got to see pretty much all of NZ and do so many amazing things.


Skiing at Cardrona Alpine Ski Resort.

And I’m still deciding on whether I will come back in the new year. But for now, I’m happy trusting my head and heart to live in the moment.

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