Trail Running & Sumner Bay

Last weekend started out with more glorious sunny weather so Adam managed to persuade me to try a trail run. As a road runner, I was a little nervous about the thought of running up and down hills but we headed up to the beautiful Godley Head area and ran around the head land. I have to admit that I absolutely loved it and now consider myself a convert!


A few nights after the trail run, I joined Port Hills Athletics Club for one of their training sessions  and really enjoyed that as well. In October there’s a local trail run called the Boulder Bay Dash so I think I’ll sign up for that and see how I fare.

We also spent some time exploring Sumner Bay and what a stunning place it is! So close to Christchurch city and yet you feel like you’ve travelled far away to a little holiday town.


The beach is clean and vast with room for families and surfers alike. You can see the alps in the distance and there are various cafes, eateries and little gardens nearby.

There’s sand and rock pools aplenty and they also have the fabulous Cave Rock which is good fun to explore.


We only did a passing visit today but will definitely spend a day or two here in the summer months.

Back at home the kitties continue to settle into their new country well. They love being able to go outside but are a little scared of the other local cats and tend to run away to watch them from the safety of indoors. They’re also getting a little too comfortable with sitting on our bar stools and have to be escorted away when it’s take away time!


Five Weeks to Go!

Unbelievably, there are now only five weeks left until we move to Christchurch, New Zealand. This blog post is rather delayed as it was actually ‘five weeks to go’ last Friday but we’ve been so busy that I’ve not had chance to write.

The last week has been a mixture of moving jobs and family visits so has been extremely busy but very enjoyable. All service companies have now been called and end of contract agreements have been organised and planned for. The import permit application for the cats has been sent off and they were very brave during their first round of parasite treatments yesterday. The majority of household items are now sold so all in all it’s been fairly productive on the job front.

We had wonderful weather this weekend which made for a very enjoyable family visit from Adam’s dad, brother and partners. We enjoyed wandering around the streets of The Hague together, ate far too many delicious meals and the girls even managed to squeeze a pedicure in whilst the boys went to the Louwman Museum to admire the cars.

The Hague has always been a super place for family catch-ups and it certainly didn’t disappoint this weekend!

20180506_221152On Sunday, temperatures hit 26 degrees which was great for the family who were chilling out on the beach. For me and Gill though, it was race time!


We signed up to the Aramco Beach Run after the high of completing our first half marathon and thought it would be a simple 10km ‘fun run’ as advertised, but it turned out to be the hardest run we’d ever done.  Blazing heat, soft sand, hilly dunes, no breeze and way too few water stops made this very challenging and I don’t think either of us will sign up for another beach run in a hurry!

We made it to the end though and were extremely proud to cross the line together and to add another medal to our collections. I’m going to miss my running buddy in New Zealand and as hard as it was, am very pleased that we managed to squeeze in a final run together.

c1f4d0c7-ade3-45af-b3ad-b85ec786ea11Our final visitors, Adam’s mum and her husband, arrive tomorrow so we’re looking forwards to seeing them. It’s a bank holiday here and the weather is looking pretty good so there will be plenty more day trips and opportunities to over-eat no doubt!


It’s important to get your priorities in order when you’re moving to the other side of the world. For me, that’s my cats, Bella and Esme.

Transporting animals is costly and complicated but they’re family and there’s no way we can leave them behind.

Adam’s priority has always been his bikes. He persuaded me to go biking with him not long after we first got together and I must admit, it was pretty good fun. I’ll never be as obsessed with bikes as Adam but we’ve had some pretty good biking holidays so far.


Adam always has some sort of bike project on the go and his most recent has been convincing me that I now need a new bike.

His argument is that since we’re moving to Christchurch, I will “need” a bike to access all the amazing trails they have there. I agreed that it would be good to have one but insisted that this was not a priority and would have to wait until we arrived in New Zealand. Adam was delighted to have a potential new project to plan and after looking at endless photographs I chose the Bardino frame from Nordest as my future bike.


I now receive daily photographs of potential parts that can be added and Adam is in the heavenly world of bike building planning.

I shouldn’t have been surprised when a package arrived yesterday…


My insistence on waiting until we arrived in New Zealand had somehow been interpreted as, “Please buy this for me immediately Adam.”

His point of view is that he’s ‘saved’ loads on import duty as shipping was free within Europe. I tried to be cross and to point out the many expensive removal costs we have yet to come but at the end of the day, who doesn’t want their lovely man building them a brand new bike?


As I say, it’s important to have your priorities straight when planning a big move.


Nine Weeks to Go!

Making the decision to settle down on the other side of the world, far from friends and family, seems as good a time as any to begin writing a blog.

After six years of moving around, the desire to ‘settle’ finally took hold of us both and where to settle became the main topic of discussion. New Zealand had always been our dream destination but we never really thought it possible and the amount of paperwork and money required seemed overwhelmingly daunting.

1418457662New Regent St smaller tram, man taking pic, busy day Oct 2014

A shortage in teachers meant that we might have a chance though so at the end of 2017 we took the plunge, hired a migration agent and started applying for jobs.

The process has definitely been stressful, expensive and complicated but our visa applications are now in and if all goes well we will be moving to Christchurch, New Zealand in nine weeks’ time – and that makes it all worthwhile!