The Working Abroad Experience in New Zealand

November 5th, 2010 in Articles by cee 0

At the age of 29, after much self evaluation and dissatisfaction as to what I’d done with my life thus far, I decided to take a risk. That risk was to quit my job during struggling economic times and leave everything behind to go traveling. As long as I could remember, I’d always wanted to travel to the farther reaches of the globe, yet I’d only really seen my own country and just a few of other places. I’d never traveled anywhere for longer than the standard 2 week holiday time alloted to us unfortunate Americans.

So, facing a new decade in my life and in desperate need for a change and some inspiration, I signed up for a year long working holiday abroad in New Zealand.

… And it’s been an amazing experience.

Yes, many of my fellow travelers are younger than I, but there’s no age limit on living your life to the fullest. So if, like me, you’re no longer a young college student, don’t fret. There’s room out there in this big beautiful world for all of us. Take the risk… it’s never too late!

If you’re still not convinced, let me sum up a few inspiring realizations as to what this experience has been all about for me:

  1. Working abroad on a working holiday visa gives us the freedom to move jobs and experience different things we might not have the chance to try working just one job at home.
  2. Imagine an evening beside a bonfire w/ a box of goon & some guitars on a Napier beach w/ your pals after a long, hot day harvesting grapes in some of the region’s top vineyards.
  3. It’s about being offered a home-cooked meal from your foreign co-workers during “smoko”, when all you brought was a measly sandwich.
  4. It’s about taking time out to follow Frodo’s footsteps, climbing volcanoes that are very much alive, in an other-worldly landscape.
  5. It’s about sitting on an abandoned West Coast beach, completely mesmerized by the swirling surf that hisses right beside you as you take in the view of magnificent sunlit, snow-capped mountains in the background.
  6. It’s about being invited as part of the family and fed with the fruits of their labour and their land.
  7. It’s about the silence & the space to clear your mind and let it wander w/out all the chatter of the world at home.
  8. It’s about the challenge of nature, as you tread new paths.
  9. It’s about the comeraderie of your fellow travelers. For they understand what it is that drives you.
  10. It’s about changing your perspective and seeing things in a whole new light.

There are so many reasons to just go ahead and do it. The world as you know it will be right there waiting for you when you get back… IF you go back 😉