Technology is amazing and very poor at the same time. I’m writing this from my laptop at Narita airport in Tokyo (amazing) but I can’t get any money out or make phone calls. The mobile has no coverage, I think that they said Vodafone doesn’t work here … language barrier. I can’t use the public phones as they work on a phone-card or cash. I have no Yen. My cards (Maestro and Amex) are not accepted (vry poor)!?!? I can’t phone or buy food but, I do have ample fat supplies and there is drinking water at the very basic airport (suprising I thought it would be all singing and dacing …. well bowing anway).
The 1st leg of the flight was good. New (very new) plane and a smooth ride. The entertainment system crashed so I watched “The Devil Wears Prada” and a bit of the Al Gore climate change doccumentory and that was it on an 11 hour flight! Food was great I went for the Japanese bento box whilst the smell next to me went or some western dish.
I have to wait untill early evening (Japan time) untill I fly. There is a change of airlines (Virgin Atlantic to here and the Air New Zealand) but I have been assured that I did not have to reclaim my bags (in fact you gett sheparded away from that area if you are in transit). I had to get a bus to a different terminal, the helpful people (with white gloves) would not allow me out of the building until the bus was due to go and then escorted me into the other building. Either they think I’m dodgy or they know I’m thick and could easily get lost.
Well just about 7 hungry hours to go then another long flight. Bye
Well the last day at work is here and I’m sat here before my shift (just, as Simmo has gone out on a shout leaving me without my car) wondering what I’m doing?!?!
It’s a strange feeling, a mix of scared and anxious mixed with some sadness and also joy and anticipation at the coming week. It’s just 3 days before I’m off to Narita airport in Tokyo, then onto Auckland airport, then one of these:
Maybe I’ll update this during the shift … maybe I’ll leave it as an unfinished work (like those great composers) or just waffle on about stuff …….
Time is slipping away at an incredible speed. The leaving ‘do’ was on Friday …. thanks to all ….. when I have worked out how, I’ll post some pics on here for just us mad medics to access ….. thanks to Richard H for stealing my camera.
Things are all on track to leave on Tuesday. Scary but good scary ….. oh that post from NZ was returned to them. I don’t know why, anyway I have recieved some of the info via email, driving course material …. not very exciting. It tells me that I’ll have to slow down! 30kph (18mph) over the stated speed limit is their excemption. You MUST stop at red traffic lights etc and no excemption when there is a temporary speed limit. Now that means that road works which are 30kph (18mph) will be just that even in an emergency!
Well today we got 5 bits of paper in 5 passports. The worry and heartache that those 5 very important visas have caused is immence (?spelling). The odd thing is that Lisa can work anywhere and for anyone and I must only work for St John (ambulance ….. works as the main / only emergency ambulance service throughout about 95% of NZ). The other thing is that I can’t send the kids to work!?!? It looks a bit like this (I couldn’t be bothered to scan ours so here’s a random German one found courtesy of Google):
Well some things are slow …. some are fast and the flight tickets were amazingly fast. I had a phone call today saying that the tickets were in! We only went in there yesterday!
The passports with the visas are in the slow post (snail mail) obviously. Dom (remember him?) said Thursday at the latest …. well tomorrow is Thursday and as of now the passports are not here …. roll on tomorrow or it’s the phone calls again!
Post from NZ is slow. ‘Important information that needs to be read’ , has been sent. Sounds very important but it’s not here yet …. posted on the 28th September! That’s 13 days so far ….. What can it be and is it coming by boat?
Drinks at Ye Olde Charles on Friday night ….. if you know it, come along!
I’ve had lots of well wishers at work
Well today whilst Lisa was at work, I took the kids to the town. Connor (4) asked the lady in the travel agents, “I want a ticket for Daddy to go an an aeroplane to New Zealand. Connor and Aidan and Liam and Mummy and Connor and Aidan and Mummy and Connor (he gets excited and repeats things) and we will go after Christmas. Scuze me lady can I have a ticket for Daddy?”. Now I’m thinking that although this is very ‘sweet’, that he really does want to get rid of me!
I had a simple criteria for my flight itinery ….. JUST NOT VIA AMERICA (previous experience of being cattle prodded into a holding pen …. ish)! Well the internet price for the ticket could be found at £588.40 inc. taxes. So off to the travel agent it was to see about thier fares (also from previous experience that the internet is noalways the cheapest deal however long you gaze at the words in the ether. Armed with the America information she duly set to task (she’s off in January too …. strange but true). “That is a very god price for such a late booking …. prices for flights do rise and not fall as the date aproaches.” £670, £692, £578 and then £509. All I hope is that it’s not in the hold and I get a drink and some grub. Singapore Airlines (very highly recommended and used before) get booked up quite early so I was unable to use them this time (Note to self ….. book earlier for Lisa and the kidlets).
There is a down side but saving £70 is worth it …. maybe. I will fly Virgin Atlantic (not across the Atlantic?!?) but to Tokyo where I will wait about 9 hours (say it quickly and it’s ok) before flying Air New Zealand to Auckland. Air NZ was not ontop of my list …. it’s functional. I have no experience of a Virgin (flight) so that’s unknown. All I know is that we are getting things sorted out.
The house rental person (they must have a propper name) came round today. This is our safety net. Rent the house if it doesn’t sell and keep it on the market hoping that it does sell. Still the rental should cover the majority of our expences here. Anyone want to buy or rent our house? Click below to add our house to your basket:
Well, today I made a phone call to NZ House. Dom was not available to talk (he apparently is our case office …. makes me feel like a psychiatric patient or criminal) and will phone me back. I phoned back this afternoon … everyone busy message ….. I phoned again and had the same ‘we’re all working hard’ message’. Then out of the blue (or smog as it’s in London) there was a cheary voice saying that all is ok and sorry it took longer than I had first been told. Your visas will be with you at the latest on Thursday.
After much silly dancing and offering to buy Dom a drink the thoughts settled to that ‘oh shit’ this really IS happening sensation.
“For those about to rock, we salute you” ……. random quote (ACDC) sounds good in my psyciatric mind!
Roll on booking flights.