“The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can.”
This time last year, I was preparing myself with no little anticipation for what I considered to be a trip of a lifetime to New Zealand. Having won the NZ-UK Link Foundation – John Avery Wine Scholarship, I was heading off care of Wine Marlborough to spend three weeks exploring and tasting my way around the Marlborough region. As anyone who has followed this blog, or my various tweetings, will know, it’s a trip from which I never truly recovered. New Zealand proved addictive, friends were made, and tears shed at the airport on departure became decisions to return as soon as possible.
Now I find myself, almost exactly a year on, packing my bags and preparing for a much more long term adventure. For, I will – very soon – be flying out to take up the role of marketing manager at Seresin Estate in Marlborough. To say that I’m excited is an understatement; it would also be an understatement to say that I am nervous. There is so much to sort out, so much to think about, so much that I’m sure I haven’t thought about, but should have done… And yet over-riding all the trepidation is a huge sense of excitement.
I love Seresin’s wines and my visit with the guys there during my scholarship trip was fantastic (you can read a little bit about it here). The combination of the biodynamic philosophy and the perfectionism in their wine-making was highly appealing and the resulting wines were undeniably delicious. This ethos, the wines and the team themselves, left an definite impression. It was an impression that went deep and, when I saw the marketing role become available, I knew that it was my dream job.
When I applied, it seemed too much to hope that I would get it, and – even when I did – the visa took such a long time to arrange that at times it felt like it would never happen. In theory, I’ve known about the move since July, but now it finally feels real. It is SO good to be able to tell people.
It won’t be easy starting a new life away from friends and family (and I know my family are going to find it hard being apart from us too), and I’m sure there will be times when I wonder if it was the right decision, but it’s not one that I have taken lightly. This is – quite simply – an amazing opportunity: a great job with a wine estate that I love, marketing wines that I believe in, the chance to enjoy a different pace and way of life and – importantly – to meet and make new friends.
So, there you go, big changes ahead – watch this space…
Things I know I will need to learn:
– to make good coffee
– to say Savvy instead of Sauvignon
– that most meals can be cooked on the barbecue
– to get used to a hot and sunny christmas
– to deal with earthquakes (not looking forward to that one)
– what “smoko” is
– to ride a bike (again)
– to not wear high heels every day
– to deal with somewhat slower internet than here
– to talk on skype without feeling self conscious
– to use sunscreen rather than just carry it around with me
– to support the All Blacks (except against England of course)
Today’s stuck-in-head-song – I see fire, Ed Sheeran
Today’s dinner – roast chicken
Today’s drinks – so far mostly tea
Today’s footwear – Joules slippers