New Zealand - how did we get here!
By plane obviously. As you know New Zealand is quite far from Europe. Ha Ha!
But let’s start from the beginning. In Summer 2016 I and Aldis sat by the river Venta in my hometown Kuldiga (check it out – it is a pretty cool place). We were discussing our future plans and we both agreed that we want our own house, a dog and definitely a happy life filled with traveling (a lot of it). BUT the big question was – WHERE do we want this? Latvia is a nice country, but we always had this urge to go somewhere, to see something different and find a place we would love to call home. We never felt a need to come home when we traveled. But our longest trip was 14 days, so it’s hard to say when exactly we would feel the need to come home. So to answer this question we had to go away, for much longer time. So at that moment, we decided that we will go to live in a different country for a while and if we would feel very homesick after a while we would have this approval that Latvia is the place for us.
We had some rules when we decided where to go. The country had to be English speaking (so it wouldn’t be a problem to get a job), it should be more or less safe (nice views would be an extra bonus). Canada, Australia and New Zealand were on our list. Far enough! So we sat there in the shadow of the tree and chose New Zealand because with a sixth sense we felt that this is a place to try out as our new home. Next visa application was at the beginning of March 2017.
Yes, we knew about our leaving this long ago! But we kept our mouth shut, because we didn't saw the point of telling everyone before we had an actual tickets. So for those who think that we kept a secret from some of you - we kept it from everyone. We were the only two persons (and one really helpful latvian guy living in NZ) who knew about this.
So we had plenty of time to get prepared and save some money. But as it happens in life our urge for traveling couldn’t stop even for a moment. We really wanted to visit the United States again, so we booked a flight to Miami in the middle of the march. In the end of February, my phone broke, so I had to spend a ridiculous amount of money for a new one.
So we had small savings for Florida trip, but no savings for visa. And then the application opened. We knew that we can’t wait for too long, because there is 100 visas for my country, and it takes just few weeks when all of them are gone. So we sat at the computer in the middle of the night (it was morning in NZ) and we had to decide. And we decided to wait another day… After three days we filled the form, payed the fee and waited for the next instructions. We had to make x-ray for our lungs which cost money and of course make a profile in visa system. In total for all, it was almost 200EUR just to apply (totally worth it). We went to Florida and secretly waited for approval. And after some days we received it in our e-mails. It was a huge step for our dream!
So after a lot of spendings, we had to start saving for our tickets to NZ. Let’s be honest – they are not cheap. So you can imagine 2017 was a financially very hard year for us. We wanted to leave in September 2017 when the Spring was starting in NZ, but I had to deal with sickness so I was afraid that all of my ticket money will be spent for recovery. That could mean we wouldn’t be able to buy the tickets and therefore go to NZ. All turned out well, and in November we were able to buy one-way tickets to NZ (better later than never). We moved out of our apartment, get rid of a lot of our stuff, packed our backpacks and flew out in 28th of January 2018.
And after 32 hours (what include baggage checks, waiting in airports, 3 flight (1h, 6,5h, and 16 h), 3 hours of bad quality sleep we reached our destination – Auckland, New Zealand!