42. The early Paula catches the bus on TV (when will she, will she be famous?) (with apologies to Bros)

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June 20th 2008
Published: July 13th 2008
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Watch out - film crew aheadWatch out - film crew aheadWatch out - film crew ahead

At Paula's very first job in New Zealand
At 6 a.m. I was called in for a second day of shooting for the TV advert (see previous entry) - the price of fame, huh?

Jobs-wise, a temporary opportunity came up: I had an interview on Monday and started on Wednesday! Not standing at another bus stop on telly, but being part of the Stock Broking Operations Team at a securities firm, ASB (Auckland Savings Bank), inputting and reconciling share trades on behalf of clients. It is good to experience the other side of the stock exchange business, and although my stint has been extended, I don’t know whether it will turn permanent as yet…
Incidentally, it is the first time I’ve worked for a non-Japanese employer for 10 years! I shall have to find another means of getting my Japan ‘fix’ 😉

We get around town by bus and at least 50% of passengers shout “Thank you Driver!” when they alight. How lovely.
The other morning, the driver even said “Welcome aboard!” to me. On some walks about the place we have seen extra hardy and athletic-looking and rubbish collectors wearing shorts (in Winter), expertly spinning the recycling bins back down the road to land back
Paula hard at work on set, AucklandPaula hard at work on set, AucklandPaula hard at work on set, Auckland

Being an extra for a tax company advert in the scene: "Waiting for the bus"
in their original positions.

On Saturday we were invited to dinner at the home of some newly-made friends at a local church. The meal featured New Zealand lamb. On our way home, we popped in for one at the local pub, The Clare Inn (local in NZ terms, 30 minutes walk away). It was full to bursting with rugby fans spilling over from the England vs. All Blacks game at Eden Park across the road. The was a respectable number of our fans donning the red rose kit but their lack of celebratory mood showed that it hadn’t been our night. Sunday morning we met a good bunch of people at church.

The following week was uneventful, save moving house. The NZ phrase for renting a room in a shared home is ‘flatting’, whether it’s in a flat or not. Anyway, the house where we were flatting had been on the market since before we’d arrived and the ‘Open Home’ custom was in force. Perhaps we have it in England but it consists of a huge board planted outside the front drive by the estate agents, depicting photos of the house interior and relevant stats, inviting any interested souls to view it during Open Home hours on both Saturday and Saturday. Not only did we have to tidy up every weekend for it 😉, but were turfed out for an hour on each day, just in case someone interested might turn up to look around. The estate agent plays host during that time, but we only heard of two viewers in the 7 weeks we were there. It didn’t strike us as the most fruitful of practices, but there you go.

Our new residence is the rather regal-sounding Royal Oak, still in the south of Auckland, next to the area of Onehunga (pronounced onny-hung-a). As we expected, traditional Maori words are interspersed with English-ones wherever you go.
In our new abode we even have carpets (which is a blessing, especially when central heating is not a regular feature in NZ houses) and are at leisure to lounge about the house to our hearts’ content at the weekend due to the absence of Open Home. Hoorah!

Later in the week I joined the library. And set about making sure that Nick's birthday the following week would be a good one...

A brief note on the two videos at the top:
1. Taken by Nick, but absolutely nothing happens (it's an atmospheric piece of work)
2. Taken by Paula, who thinks it's hilarious


13th July 2008

Royal Oak
Regal? Sounds more like a pub to me!

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