How on Earth this happened, I don't know.
On Saturday night, we ended up at a random house party. Filled with Kiwis.
Given my current contempt for Australasians in general, I'm really not sure how we cracked an invitation to the fold.
You know you've stepped into New Zealand when the people around you keep saying things like, "How's this (not theece, they say 'this' like we say this) for a random Auckland party ey?"
We were like "yeah...yeah it's great we're totally from there."
Dudes all around us would sidle up to our little foreign enclave (two Brits and three South Africans) and say, "So whereabouts in Auckland are you from?" (Not New Zealand, Auckland.)
The house was stuffed with about 50 of them. And to be fair, as far as house parties are concerned, it was a nice little refresher of my life past. I haven't been to a piss party where everyone is drunk, obnoxious and random in a long time.
It kind of made me feel 22 again.
Eventually, because everyone thought we were honest-to-God Kiwis, we gave up. If you cahn't beat 'em, join 'em.
"Hoi, I'm Bahbara, and I'm from Palmerston North."
Kiwi: Ah Pahmie! That's great, you know [that night club? Shop? Thing?] there? Yeah that was my haunt, surprised I've never seen you there before."
We might share a hemisphere, but I've never felt more foreign.
You get used to Brits saying, "but you guys are so similar and have the same climate yadda yadda." [Sidenote: NO WE DO NOT. IT'S LIKE ME SAYING BRITAIN AND CANADA ARE REALLY SIMILAR. WE ARE IN NO WAY SIMILAR. THEY HAVE DINGOS AND EMUS, AND WE HAVE OTHER SHIT. SO STOP WITH YOUR 'YOU'RE ALL ANTIPODEONS AND THEREFORE THE SAME' CRAP, OK?]
Er, so yes, I have cousins from New Zealand. I have even been there. And yes, it was a nice little piss up.
But it has to be said - when large groups of expat nationals get together in a room, something happens. The stereotypes come out, and I gotta say, this is why I don't hang out with South Africans every single weekend en masse.
For exactly the same reasons.
I love my friends that are here, but then, we're not the type to run around in a flag and talk about braais and Julius Malema all day long.
I love my friends as we know each other's history and we can catch up in five seconds. Also being from the same place, we do share context, accents and backgrounds. Sure.
I mean, don't get me wrong, I am all for seeing my countrymen and getting pole-axeled on a
But when antipodeans hang out in packs, they get a bit narky. And make me - Brits included - wander why they're here in the first place. They don't hang out with new people, they talk only about home, and they don't integrate with other crowds. Why are they experiencing a new country again?
The New Zaylanders don't like us either, I don't think. The moment we went into stealth mode, putting on [extraordinarily shit] Kiwi accents, they welcomed us in.
That's the key I think. Blend in, or fuck off.