I was going to make my first contribution to this blog an attempt at answering the big questions around our decision to move our family around the world. The “whys”, the “hows”, the risk assessment, etc. It got long and complicated in a hurry- and I shut it down. Instead, I’ve decided to share my first thoughts on what it FEELS like to go from being a resident of Washington DC one week to an expat the next.

It’s waking up refreshed at 5am, before the sunrise, and enjoying a cup of tea with my wife.

It’s the joys of discovering strange new lunch counters with my kids, buying second hand bikes from strangers and being invited into their homes, and exploring the beer aisle in the local market.







It’s figuring out how to brew coffee with a French press.

It’s learning how to drive on the other side of the road and laughing at myself after the 50th time of turning on the windshield wipers while attempting to find the turn signal.

It’s turning around to face the South Pacific Ocean with postcard views and world-class surf.

It’s watching my children try on school uniforms and be introduced to Maori phrases that revolve around kindness and respect for others… while discovering they won’t need to bring home textbooks or assignments this year, home is for family and play.

It’s not having a working cellphone, and not needing one either.

It’s seeing my wife’s eyes light up at her new workspace- a seven-minute bike ride away- filled with kind, caffeinated and like-minded New Zealand entrepreneurs.

It’s back to watching my kids find joy in spending time with each other.

Tomorrow is hospital orientation. We haven’t really DONE anything yet.  But already it FEELS like we’ve found what we were looking for on our adventure to New Zealand.

Jesse Irwin

Jesse Irwin

It's Jesse. I'm an emergency physician and healthcare leader, a Navy veteran, a father of three children, and until recently a land-locked Washingtonian with dreams of living on the ocean. I'm also a Luddite and an unapologetic introvert. But I'm going to give you, my family and friends, and this blog my best attempt at sharing my experiences here in Gisborne.
Jesse Irwin

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