Summer in New Zealand

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We have returned to live in New Zealand, from where I sent this month’s epistle.

I hope you had a lovely festive season. Given the costs and chaos of moving half way around the world, we had mostly agreed to no presents this Christmas.

We made exceptions for the back section. I bought my other half a Jackson shovel (the only thing for digging holes according to the guys who hand dug all the posts for the massive timber retaining wall they put in to prevent further landslips).
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Back in New Zealand

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I arrived back in New Zealand this month.

I’m up against my deadlines again for Arctic Circle (the strip below was a recent favourite),
cartoon about the internet going downand I started running the new cartoons for my Doodle Diary on GoComics.com. Which means more deadlines. As well as Reasons to Be Cheerful, I’m documenting some of my life here in Lyttelton with a New Zealand Diary. New Zealand flax Being away for so long has given me a newcomer’s perspective again, so it is an opportunity to illustrate the things that are different to life in Europe. There is a lot I remember from being here before, people who are still here and the natural wonders that attracted me in the first place. But things have changed in the country as a whole and with Lyttelton in particular. It and the rest of Christchurch are still recovering from the earthquake that struck in 2011.
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OMG: Arctic Circle Has Been in Syndication For Ten Years

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Arctic Circle was picked up by King Features in 2006 and there followed a long period of development (where I sent off strips to my editor, Brendan Burford and he told me everything that was wrong with them). It launched in newspapers on August 27th, 2007. Here is the first week (I didn’t do the colouring back then, so the files I have are black and white):
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