As Sarah 24, from Grimsby , begins her new adventure in New Zealand, she tells us all about her first few months working as an Au Pair in Stratford and her plans to do some really cool things!!
I signed up to Work New Zealand with BUNAC (highly recommended, by the way), and after a heap of help from them getting flights and visas etc. sorted, I made my way to London Heathrow ...
I left England on the 7th July. My Dad and best friend were there to see me off ... I was nervous, scared, excited, happy - so many different feelings.
I spent a few AMAZING days in Hong Kong with all the other BUNAC'ers ... that was so much fun and something I am so glad I got to experience. It would be cool to go back there and spend a bit more time sightseeing when I'm not jet-lagged or hung over!
I had a job lined up well before I left the UK - I found a family on a backpackers website that wanted a live-in Au Pair, so after arriving in Auckland, I was only there for 2 (fun-filled) days with the others before I got on a coach and headed to New Plymouth.
I can remember feeling so alone on the coach ride, I was in a strange country not knowing who I was going to be living with, not knowing ANYBODY. This feeling lasted about 10 minutes ... and then I was just SO excited to be here, seeing this beautiful place. I couldn't wait for all the new things I knew I would experience :)
I lived with a family for the first 4 months Au Pairing for their 4 children. I was so grateful that they were such a nice family - I had no idea what they would be like! My mum thought I was a bit crazy picking a family with 4 children, but I trusted my instincts and I'm so glad that I did :)
There is always something going on, the kids have heaps of after school activities. It's a very busy house, and so much fun.
While I was there I was able to do some really cool things! I sledged on a Mountain, got a tattoo, went on a chocolatiers course, went on an art course, saw a live Rugby World Cup game, made a quilt, got a job in bar, shot a gun, went away on weekend trips, been in a play (about birth, of all things!), went on countless bush walks, read 11 books, saw the Wellington Ukelele band live, touched a giant windmill on a wind farm and been to LOTS of museums. Ok, so some of those things weren't THAT cool, but the fact that I'm doing them UPSIDE down is pretty cool eh?!
Other than that, I was just 100% absorbed in family life . My days were filled with playing, entertaining, cleaning, cooking and all the other things that come with a family of 4 children.
I was in Stratford until 24th November, after that I hoped on a bus and back up to Auckland. I didn’t have a solid plan, but I thought a trip right up north to Paihia was going to be the best idea for now.
Find out more about Work New Zealand.
Have your own amazing BUNAC travel story? Tell us all about it now, please send us your BUNAC blogs to firstname.lastname@example.org .
Check out the rest of Sarah's travel story in New Zealand HERE .