It’s been a seriously long time since I’ve updated our blog and there is a semi-valid reason. My wife and I have accepted teaching positions at a college in Auckland, New Zealand starting in January. This has meant several things. One, our walkabout has unfortunately been cut short… not terminated thankfully, but reduced to three months. The last couple of months since our last post have been extremely crazy with closing my business and saying goodbye to clients, friends, and family. We have busily packed our house trying to decide what we might want to take to New Zealand if we accepted the job. Oh and by the way, we didn’t know if the New Zealand job would happen prior to packing up our house for our renters. We left the first week of August not for Iowa but for New Zealand to do a final interview. The job seems to be a great opportunity to branch out and even possibly earn my doctorate!?
This trip and eventual job to New Zealand ties in with a previous “walkabout”, which was a 3 ½ week trip to New Zealand for our honeymoon. We both came back raving about NZ and wishing we could someday have the chance to live in the spectacular country… interesting how life and the Almighty work. In many ways our preparation for the walkabout was also unknowingly preparation for our move to NZ. Mentally and physically preparing to leave our home for an extended period of time and saying goodbyes have changed to a more permanent outcome. Unfortunately these actions were somewhat unknown at the time and quite rushed in the end. We accepted the job after leaving Seattle and driving to Iowa with a good portion of our belongings.
Since accepting there have been other preparations added to the list – obtaining residency in NZ, obtaining shipping quotes to ship a container of goods to NZ, thinking about the curriculum we’ll be teaching, what goods to take and much more. It’s ironic that as we decided on a name for this blog and came up with “walkabout” the name has taken on a new meaning. A walkabout referred to a kind of rite of passage in Australian Aboriginal culture where a man would journey into the outback to live and grow mentally, physically and spiritually. I was looking at this trip as a possible way of expanding my horizons and open to the idea of life changing, although I didn’t expect this to happen prior to our trip. I did often think that the hardest thing about our RTW trip would be the decision to do it. Maybe that’s what was needed to also make this move to NZ more of a mental possibility. I believe Bilbo said to Frodo something along the lines of once you step out onto the road you never know where it’s going to take you. Now that NZ will always be acquainted with Lord of the Rings, I think this quote is even more appropriate for us.