House Sitting Magazine: Issue 34 January 2021

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HOUSE SITTING THE KIWI WAY By Nicole Gustas If there's one country that should be praised for it's handling of the Covid19 pandemic, then it's got to be New Zealand. With things pretty much back to normal, house sits are able to go ahead, as people venture out to explore the beauty of their own homeland. Nicole Gustas tells her story of how she got happily "stuck" in New Zealand, and provides some useful tips for future house sits. In January 2020, we came to New Zealand to housesit for a couple of months. In March our flight home was cancelled due to COVID-19. We’ve been stuck in New Zealand ever since. But “stuck” implies we don’t want to be here, when the truth is we are incredibly grateful for every minute we get to spend in this country with its gorgeous scenery, wise leaders and non-existent COVID infection rates. Because we’ve stayed so much longer, we’ve gotten a much more thorough introduction into the things that make housesitting in New Zealand unique compared to other countries. Whether it’s the application process (be fast!), the animals you might encounter (do you like sheep?) or some ways in which homes differ (don’t expect heat!), this is what it’s like to housesit the Kiwi way.