15 May 2010

Life in New Zealand

I live in Auckland, New Zealand. For those who don't know much about our little land, we are not the eastern island of Australia. Neither are we somewhere near Iowa. We are our own fiercely independant free-thinking sovereign state, way down yonder in the South Pacific.

We call ourselves "Kiwis" - not the fruit (we call that "kiwifruit") or the flightless bird. We're a pretty relaxed bunch - our national motto is, "She'll be right, mate!"

Kiwis have a D.I.Y. mentality, we don't like fakes, posers or people who look down on others. We love nothing better than an honest try-er. We cheer for the underdog. Kiwis have a can-do attitude. We like to take what we have and make the best of it. "There's not much that can't be fixed with a piece of No.8 wire" has long been a Kiwi motto. We like to think of ourselves as "clean and green". We love the Great Outdoors.

There are only 4 million of us sharing this beautiful country. One million of them live in my city, Auckland. There are two main islands (North and South).

The further north you are, the warmer it is. Auckland is fairly northern. We never get snow (although the South Island and central North Island do). We are a multi-cultural bunch. As well as our native Maori people, Polynesians from all over the Pacific have settled here in large numbers, and their easygoing family-centred cultures are a big part of our national psyche. 

We're blessed to live here in this beautiful natural paradise. NZ is known for a rolling green hills, our lush native bush, our uncrowded beaches and outdoor lifestyle. There's a fair bit of rain - hence the green. The climate is mild. Not too hot in summer, not too cold in winter.

Our seasons are opposite to the Northern Hemisphere: Our summer is your winter. We have Christmas in sunshine. Not a hint of snow and yet we still slather everything with pictures of Santa and sing "Jingle Bells". Crazy huh?

The whole country goes on holiday in January, which is a great start to the year. We go camping, spend all day at the beach, go swimming. Our kids run barefoot. Not because we can't afford shoes, but because to us being barefoot means freedom.

There's nothing a Kiwi likes better than showing off our beautiful country to visitors from Abroad. So come on over...!

The Best Little Country in the World is My Home
Summer by the Lakes (Rotorua-Taupo)
Just Down the Road (Pt Chevalier Beach, Auckland)
What I Love About Where I Live (Auckland)
Away We Went (Taupo-Mt Ruapehu)
Recipe for a Family Adventure (Northland)
Classic Kiwi - Sandy Bay
Kidfree Weekend in Paradise (Queenstown)
Five Go Adventuring Again (Rotorua, the Luge)
Wild West (Piha Beach, West Auckland)
Clown Camping (Martins Bay, Warkworth)
ANZAC Biscuits (New Zealand in WWI)
Last Days of Summer (Coromandel)
Bye Bye Comfort Zone (Lake Taupo)

  • Ads/adverts: TV commercials, advertisements
  • Bach: Small holiday home, pronounced "batch" (called a "Crib" by South Islanders)
  • Barbie/BBQ: Barbeque; Sausages and steak cooked on an outside grill (which kiwis eat all summer long)
  • Bloke: A man, often used when referring to a stranger. Eg: Who was that bloke?”
  • Bonnet: Car hood
  • Boot: Car Trunk
  • Brekkie: Short for Breakfast
  • Bikkie: Short for Biscuit
  • Biscuit: Cookie
  • Bro: Short for "brother", a friendly term for a male friend
  • Cheerio: A form of Goodbye; also little red cocktail sausages
  • Chips: Fries (also the same word is used for crisps)
  • Chemist: Pharmacy
  • Cheers: Thank you
  • Chilly bin: Insulated box, used to keep beer & food cold (what Aussies call an "Esky")
  • Cornflour: Cornstarch
  • Cuppa: Short for Cup of tea or coffee eg. “Do you want a cuppa?”
  • Cuz/Cuzzie/Cuzzie bro: Short for "cousin". Another friendly term for a friend or relative
  • Dairy: Convenience or corner store selling milk, bread, papers, convenience foods and dairy produce
  • Dole: The Unemployment Benefit.
  • Dunny: Toilet, bathroom
  • Eh/Aye: Pronounced as you would the letter "A" (ay) and often used by Kiwis at the end of sentences
  • Flannel: Wash cloth
  • Footpath: Sidewalk
  • Good on ya: Congratulations, well done
  • Gumboots/Gummies: Wellington boots, galoshes, rubber boots (a cornerstone Kiwi fashion item
  • Hokey Pokey: A type of caramel or candy used in NZ's famous hokey pokey ice cream.
  • Hoons: Thugs. Usually associated with young men, fast cars, loud stereos and alcohol
  • Hori: Someone who is pretty rough around the edges, a bit fresh. Be careful who you say this to
  • Jandals: Flip Flops (aussies sometimes call them "thongs"; I know, weird huh?)
  • enough
  • Jersey: Sweater – used when its just cold 
  • Jumper: Woollen sweater – used when it is pretty cold; used interchangeably with Jersey
  • Knickers: Underwear (also called undies)
  • Kumara: Sweet Potato native to New Zealand
  • Lift: Elevator
  • Lollies: Candy, sweets
  • Loo: Toilet; "I'm going to the loo" = "I am going to the bathroom"
  • Motorway: Freeway
  • Mate: "Friend"; as in, Thanks Mate! Could also be "Thanks bro!" or "Thanks Cuz!"
  • Milo: A chocolatey hot drink we all love to guzzle when we're cold (think, hot chocolate but creamier)
  • Nappy: Diaper
  • Netball: A game that is similar to basketball and predominately a womens sport
  • Pakeha: Maori for "White person"
  • Petrol: Gasoline
  • Pony Tail: Hair tied at the back
  • Pram: Baby’s stroller or pushchair
  • Rubbish: Garbage
  • Stoked: Pleased, thrilled, happy
  • Tea: Means tea as in the drink tea, but it is also used as dinner/supper (the evening meal)
  • Tea Towel: Dish cloth
  • Torch: Flashlight
  • Tin or Tinned: Can or Canned food, eg. Tin of baked beans.
  • Whinge: Complain

FOLLOW ME ON Facebook // Twitter // Instagram // Bloglovin //


Jen said...

cool post :)

PaisleyJade said...

Oooo - I love it! Makes me so proud to be a Kiwi!! I bought a shirt today with at pic of NZ on it to wear with pride!

Anonymous said...

Kia ora mate!! :) As a transplanted Canadian to Godzone I'd like to mention that Christmas in NZ also means Strawberries. In Canada, Christmas means mandarins. ;)

And the FOOD!! you didn't mention the pavs, the meat pies, the chocolate fish, the pineapple lumps, and all that goodly stuff that I would miss if we left! ;)

Can I link to this when people ask me these questions? I get these questions a lot. :)

Visiting from SITS. :)

Anonymous said...

hi i just wanted to let you know i changed my email, Jacquiblogger@gmail.com
thanks :)

KNB said...

Thankis for all the great info and pictures! All I know is that January here means 4 feet of snow, and five-foot icicles, and treacherous driving. Wish I was there!


Anonymous said...

So there is!! How on earth did I miss that? ha ha. Need marmite, too. I'm down in the BOP so Auckland's a bit far for a girly night but next time I'm up I'll let you know! :)

Widge said...

Awesome Simoney! I'm with p.j - proud as :)

Oh and I love the excuse about "freedom" for not affording shoes ;p haha kidding

Ann said...

Like it! Just visited you for the first time... love your party invitations too - found them a month too late. After nearly a year here it's a great summary of Kiwi-ness. I'd change a few things of course... you really need to let go of that whole pavlova debate and admit defeat and aren't Crowded House Australian? Is this why I am not making friends here????!

Simoney said...

Ahhhh Ann!
They've sucked you in!
Australians would have you BELIEVE that they invented Pavlova (they didn't)AND that Crowded House are Australian - they AREN'T!!
Crowded House are as Kiwi as the All Blacks.
They grew up here, they launched their career here. They were originally an 80's band called Spilt Enz.
The founding members of Spilt Enz formed Crowded House (The Finns) and moved to Aussie because it has a bigger market and if Kiwi bands are ever going to make it big "overseas" they usually launch from Australia.
Hence the confusion!
They are Kiwi boys!!
Now you know :)

Post a Comment