I (Evan) have been "confirmed" for a position at Waikato Hospital in Hamilton, New Zealand (North Island-2 hours South of Auckland) from sometime late this month until at least November 19th and possibly through the end of January.
We love Port Macquarie. It's a great town, beautiful beaches, super nice people, good location and we're in a nice big house and have learned our way around "our" town already. But the credentialing process is just grinding along far too slowly for my taste. It is clear that it will be impossible for me to be credentialed in less than 8 weeks IF everything goes perfectly from this point on. I'll have at least 2 interviews (one with the emergency medicine college and one with the medical council--in separate cities at separate times). Best case scenario puts me working in the 2nd week of November, worst case....December?!
So, one of the international recruiters I've been in touch with for the last year and a half or so sent me an email a couple weeks ago asking how things were going. I shared my lamentations with her. She offered her advice, opinions, and services to help find me a temporary position until my license here was done. In short order a short term job opened up at Waikato Hospital that takes me through the end of November. They were happy with my CV, flexible with the time off I requested and, best of all, it takes only 20 days to get credentialed in New Zealand! I grabbed the opportunity.
I'm not burning any bridges here in Port Macquarie yet. If things with the Australia Medical Council progress at a reasonable pace we may, yet, end up back here in December for the last 3 months of our time in Australia. But if things get nuts or there are other delays Waikato feels that they can provide a position (but can't promise anything) through the end of January 2011. We'd then spend February traveling in Australia and New Zealand until our flight to Tokyo on March 1st.
We are not yet sure when we need to be in New Zealand. Best case scenario is I'll be credentialed by Sept. 21st. Realistically it'll be a few days later than that. When we know a bit more about when they need me in New Zealand we'll plan our last few days in Port, schedule some travel to Canberra, Melbourn, and maybe Broken Hill (to get some "outback" time in). We want to visit the Hunter Valley's wine country. We'll post up on Facebook at least and we'll try to update the blog when we have details.
What we're doing now is just being flexible. We've been conservative with spending so financially things are OK. Moving ALL of our stuff again isn't something we're looking forward too, but we can do it and we'll be OK.
So, since our last blog we've spend 3 days/4 nights in Brisbane (click link for my flickr photos). What a gorgeous city. It's a big city but with a really friendly and small townish feel. They actually have a man-made beach in the middle of downtown. There are lifeguards, gorgeous sugar white sand, palm trees, the works-all free and open to the public.
There is a free bus making a loop around the better part of downtown. A huge nice city park/botanical garden that I found prettier than Central Park. We spent a day at the Steve Irwin Australia Zoo, and absolutely loved it. The staff clearly loved their jobs. They walked around with various animals on their shoulders that you could pet. You could walk around with and pet koalas and kangaroos. There were lots of crocs, of course. Still, however, have not seen a live platypus--and I really want to.
We met with Meg and Paul Breshears, cousins of Mike who we met during our dive trip in Honduras. They showed us around parts of town we would otherwise have missed, fed us fantastic fish and chips at their home. They had kids that got along famously with ours. All in all a really nice experience.
On a lighter note...we love box wine--we have now consumed a total of 14 liters of box wine during our 3 weeks or so in Australia--about 19 bottles! Amazing how nice it is when you aren't continually exhausted and/or working nights and/or taking kids to sports/scouts and/or going to other meetings, etc. I think I could adapt just fine to this life of leisure!