I have dumped all my earlier posts since they were just tests and trials along the way I was learning how blogging works. To keep notes about my research I created a new blog “Conformally speaking” where I promise to publish some expository notes about my PhD thesis progress.

I have been thinking about having a blog thousands of times but there were so many reasons why actually I did not have a decent blog. Laziness was just one of them…

I am not seeking excuses. I do a lot of useful things in my life, anyway. Probably, too many, frankly speaking. It is a good time to become more particular about what to do, however.

I have spent 7 years in New Zealand so far. The last month was really hectic, and I forgot to celebrate the anniversary.

On November 11, 2004, I arrived to Auckland. This was my first time when I traveled abroad. I was totally confused and really scared with what I was doing.

I had a fairly good command of written English but my spoken side of it was completely embryonic. The first year I was feeling that I am learning to speak again. My ears were slowly getting used to the accent. My mouth learned what to say in all these little situations of the everyday life.

I was progressing quite well. The primary goal of mine was to get a job and secure my immigration status in New Zealand. I started my job search almost immediately after I arrived. I was spending hours and hours searching through the web sites and newspapers in order to find opportunities and learn about requirements applied to professionals in Information Technology. To be honest, I clearly realized that the most likely job for me would be a position of a Computer Technician. I had enough knowledge and experience, and even I had some relevant certifications such as Network+, MCDST and in May 2005 I passed (after second attempt) my CCNA test! And I was sending away dozens of applications, at least one or two every day. I was learning from the feedback whatever it was. After I landed to my first position I calculated that in total within 6 months I applied about 200 times!!!

So, my first job was in Ellerslie Computers Ltd, 112 Main Highway, Ellerslie, Auckland, New Zealand, run by Arjun Singh. Now his company is called E-Computers, he has expanded his business and opened a new shop next door to his workshop, but at the time when I was working there the business looked pretty tiny. I was waiting for the day when he would say “Yuri, I can’t pay you anymore”. And this day come. Right after I had submitted my Expression of Interest for New Zealand Residence! This unlucky situation was in fact quite fortunate for me because it gave me a kick to find a better job!

I need to confess that I just started to learn driving and was in the middle of getting my Full New Zealand Driver License In fact, it was converted from my Russian driver license that was just formally awarded for me because I never drove in Russia. I started driving in New Zealand after my friend Vlad Shilov urged me to buy a car and taught me to drive very patiently. A few more people were involved in getting me into a good driving shape. I am very grateful to all of them!

This was a very good timing because the next job that I found required an intensive driving. Nik Janetzke, Director of Future PC, recognized my technical skills and supported my Variation of Conditions application for the Work Permit for the position in his company.

It was a really hard time. This work is not for the faint-heartened! I did a lot. I learned a lot.

By the time I received my New Zealand residence permit in August 2007 I felt absolutely exhausted. This was the reason why I came to Nik and told him that I was going to resign. He was so generous to understand me…

I went to Russia in November 2007 and came back in the end of January 2008. After that another chapter of my life started.

I have started a “new life” quite a few times in my lifespan. Looking back I am really amazed of what I was doing, and I am asking myself “Why?”