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Celebrating 4 Years in New Zealand (and remembering the fun of moving 48 tonnes of machinery!)

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Four years ago, we packed 48 tonnes of engineering gear and bikes into 4 x 40ft containers in the UK and set off for New Zealand. When we arrived, we had the luxury of a whole 6 weeks to find a home for them before they arrived. No pressure! Luckily Steve was already in New Zealand and, having been here for years, he had lots of advice ready.

The house we settled on (and by then we knew the price and state of every property for sale in the neighbourhood) had no shed, but there was room for one. The council and estate agents said it was 'reasonably likely' we would get planning permission. We would have preferred 'definite' but 'reasonably likely' would have to do.

Just two days before the containers arrived, we completed on the house. On the day we moved in, we had to pull out the front gate and lay gravel into the paddock where the containers could be placed. My wife muttered something about priorities and went off to sort out the house.

Then came eight months of planning, council applications and shed building. We dug a 250m-long trench to lay the 3-phase cable in. The electricity company did their bit by extending that another half a kilometre up the road. The concrete pad went down and the shed went up!

It took a 5-tonne forklift and a lot of time and patience to lift all the machinery out of the containers, 250 metres down a steep hill, and into the shed. There were quite a few near-misses.

And here we are, 4 years on. It's like we've been here forever!