Okay, we are not really moving to New Zealand (aka Aotearoa), but it is fun to fantasize.
Hence I present the pros and cons of each city I am considering in order, and then on the pros and cons of moving to New Zealand as a whole.
Nelson (go there in Google Earth). Wow. Simply wow. So many positive things to say about it. I’ll leave it mostly to videos, but it is the sunniest area of New Zealand. February, which seems to be the hottest month only gets to 75 (°F, that’s 22 °C for the rest of the world outside the US here). It is already on the South Island, so you have access to all the stuff down there without the ferry ride to the North Island. The culture and town as a whole seems to be very Saraish, nice parks, nice weather, lots of art, diverse people…
Check out these videos: Larry the Travel Guy in Nelson (there is a YouTube video on his channel, but it’s too small to see), or this Nelson slideshow/video, the Nelson Market, another slideshow, the CouchSurfer’s take a day off from the NZ Collective to go into the city, a slideshow of a father/son tramping (backpacking) trip through Abel Tasman National Park which isn’t too far from Nelson city. (go there).
Cons: It’s a small city, like 43,000, with another 45,000 in the district so finding a job that pays well enough becomes a challenge. Apparently the cost of living is a bit higher there then other cities, as one would expect for such an amazingly beautiful area. In July (the coldest month) the low can average 35 degrees (°F/1.6 °C)…okay that might be a positive, it’s a bit cold for me compared to Wellington (I’ll get to that city in a bit) but warmer then even the high in Ohio during the winter. Really, the only real negative to this city is the job prospects.
Wellington (go there). The capital of New Zealand.
Pros: It’s the capital. It’s a fairly large city so jobs should be no problem. It isn’t as large as Auckland, but by not moving to Auckland you get more points to your emigration request to move to New Zealand and really, Auckland is too far from the rest of New Zealand anyhow. The hot days are only 69 (I’ll stick to °F from here on out since that is what we are used to in the US) and the winter lows drop only to 43 with a winter high of 53. Of course this is kind of a negative as well, as the weather doesn’t have quit enough change. Being a big city, the access to culture is a bit more diverse. It is on the North Island so if you want to see stuff up there, there is no 3 hour ferry ride to get up there, then again, lots of the stuff I would want is on the South Island anyhow…
Cons: It’s a big city. It is apparently very windy there. Not quit as pretty as Nelson in my opinion.
Christchurch (go there).
Pros: On the South Island. Temperatures are nearly like Nelson. Larger than Nelson so the job prospects are better.
Cons: A bit too far South really, it would be nice to to have the North Island only a short ferry ride, not just a ferry ride and a 5 or 6 hour drive.
New Zealand pros and cons as a whole:
Pros: Far away from here, so in terms of a move that would shake things up in our lives, that is about as big a shake up as you get. Beautiful country, with lots of variety in driving range. That isn’t to say the US, doesn’t have vast variety, but you would need to travel longer to get to it. 3 weeks of vacation a year (required by all employers, I am not sure if that time rolls over to the next year if you don’t take it or not, and it may be 4 weeks now, though perhaps that 4th week counts all the holidays)!
Cons: Too Socialistic for me. Very far from friends and family, and giving the cost of tickets, we would seldom see any of them. Probably would have a hard time convincing Sara. Moving that far would be in a word, expensive… I can’t even imagine what it cots to rent a shipping container to get everything over there. The electronics would all have to be new as they use a different voltage/currant and outlet over there. The computer would be okay so long as I change the power supply, but everything else would have to be got there. They use PAL, which so far as I am concerned, outside of color, is far worse than NTSC, so shows wouldn’t look as good. Speaking of which, most of the shows I like wouldn’t be watchable there since there is little way of watching the shows there (not sure if you can watch shows through the network web pages there or not, or if NBC, CBS, FOX, ABC and the like block outside the US). We would probably still take Sara’s small TV, a DVD and VCR player and buy a converter so we can plug them in to keep up with our current DVDs in the even we don’t get a multiformat/region DVD player and/or TV there. (The best bet would be a multiformat TV.) The biggest issues though, as I already noted, is the socialistic aspects and that it is so far from friends and family. At least with a move to Arizona or something, friends and family could visit, but the chances of many of them visiting us there would be near zero (even Sara’s parents would probably only make it there a couple of times). Of course we would make new friends, and could try to convince everyone else to relocate as well. 😉