As of December 2nd, I officially live in a flat in Dunedin! It’s about a half hour walk from my department but closer to town and in a nice little neighborhood. The flat has 5 units, and we are smack dab in the middle. My flatmate is names Djuna. She moved here from California about the same time I did (nearly 7 months ago!). She works at the university in the anatomy department.
Moving was a bit stressful. The flat is unfurnished, so we had to buy pretty much everything. Coming from Abbey College, I did not have much.
Sunday morning I finished packing my room and loaded all of it in my car. I had gotten the keys the day before and moved a few bits in already. Djuna was away for the weekend and most of the week, so I moved in first. We bought a couch off a local lady selling on FB. That’s means I had to arrange a way to get it to the new flat. Long story short, I was able to hire a local kiwi with a red truck/ute to transport it on Sunday. It was actually easier than I thought. My friend James graciously helped move the couch as the other hand. Easy and done before lunch! I ate at Abbey for the last time, they were serving my favorite meal of poached eggs brunch. I asked my other friend Grace is she could help transport a table and chairs bought from FB as well. Her car is bigger than mine! She was fantastic and fit it all in her car and helped me move all my other stuff into the flat. AND screwed the table back onto the legs (the only way to get it to fit in the car!). Home at last. Well sort of.
Everything was strewn about my room. I was able to clean our new plates and silverware, clean the windows, set up the rug and move furniture about. I also changed my bedroom curtains. I also did two loads of laundry. Funny story, the machines are in the bathroom, and the fan does not turn on unless the lights are on. I learned that the hard way. I also had shut the door to keep the noise down. Well one load in and the place was a sauna, water dripping and everything. Oops. From now on, window and door open, fan and lights on.
But I still didn’t have a bed! (Although I did have wifi, first thing I plugged in actually). I slept on our pull out couch using my new comforter and sheets. It was actually really nice to be in my own place. The bed arrived the following afternoon. It was delivered by two guys from the furniture shop. Easy! Except that it was a pain to put together. After a few fails, I set it up properly and made my brand spanking new bed. Glorious.
I had Domino’s pizza for dinner as a reward, and because I didn’t have any food or dishes to really cook with. I saved that until Tuesday!
Some of the little stuff I have figured out:
Always have a screw driver and scissors/box cutter
You dont have to do everything at once, although you want to
Moving is expensive
It’s really amazing to have a deck
The little things in a house make it a home
Curtains and rugs are really important to me
Don’t forget to turn in the fridge before you buy stuff to go in it
Food is one of the hardest things to buy in a new country
There is a thermostat on the hot water heater that can be adjusted, which I can now do on my own
Ask for help, people are more than willing usually
Try the shower asap. A bad shower = bad house
Reuse/recycle when you can and buy from other people