Monday, August 31, 2009

A walk along the beach might sound tempting on a hot day...

However, if you are not looking to get soaked, do not attempt your walk in the area between the water and the unusual 5 foot high sand wall.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

I always thought I had wasted an extra year (and two summers) in Indiana...

New Zealand uses (what appears to be) a very streamlined system for determining who is allowed to immigrate. They don't care where you're from (as long as you speak English); they don't care what you look like. They do care how old you are (sorry to my readers over the age of 55), and they do care about your education/profession. If you're bored, give the NZ Immigration Points calculator a try. If you score over >100, you are eligible for entry (but if you don't have a job lined up, you really need more points, or they won't let you in). If you score >140, you are automatically allowed in...after they confirm you are not lying.

I claimed a conservative 145 points. I was feeling pretty good for four weeks, until someone at a desk in London decided my Doctor of Pharmacy degree did not allow me to 1) claim points for having a pharmacy degree (NZ issues only Bachelors of Pharmacy) and 2) claim any points for being a pharmacist (since a Bachelors of Pharmacy is required to be a pharmacist) and 3) claim any points for a profession on the Long Term Skills Shortage List (since as above, I am not a pharmacist). This brought me down to 60 points. It was recommended that I find a job as a pharmacist, then I can claim points for having a job as a pharmacist...

So I've sent this back to NZ Immigration (copied from their website). As my qualifications have been assessed by the NZ Pharmacy Council, and they have issued me a provisional license, I'm hoping another 4 week wait will take care of things.

If your qualification is not on the List of Qualifications Exempt from Assessment, or the List of Qualifications Recognised as an Exception you will need to get your qualification assessed by the NZQA (unless you have full or provisional registration and your qualification has been assessed by a New Zealand organisation as comparable with a New Zealand qualification on the List of Qualifications Exempt from Assessment).

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

I used to have a cool credit card that payed off my mortgage every time I bought something. I could spend $15,000 on a trip to New Zealand and think: "Hey, I'm being responsible. This trip will pay off my mortgage a month early." Unfortunately, thanks to new credit card regulations, this perk has disappeared. So I broke down and found a new card. It won't pay off my mortgage, but it does give me 1% cash back to do with as I please...and there are absolutely no transaction fees if I use it in New Zealand...and I got to upload a cool picture of Picton to put on the card.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Nico says we can't have flamingos...

I am probably too young to be worrying about the weather, but the thought of a real winter is starting to scare me a bit. With that in mind, we are scoping out warmer parts of the Long White Cloud.

One of these is Napier. That's right, the art deco capital of the southern hemisphere. Neither of our NZ trips this year brought us to Napier, so this would be a "sight unseen" relocation. Fortunately, Nico is used to those; and I've had a little practice, as well.

Here are some borrowed pictures:

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Saturday morning @ The Laguna Coffee Co. The bike, the beach, and a jazz quintet.

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