Twenty Questions with Angie Howe
Welcome to Twenty Questions!
Every week I invite a twenty-something onto the blog and share their responses to twenty quick-fire, intimate questions. No one featured on Twenty Questions is a public figure, and most of these people I don’t know very well, or at all. My hope is that by taking a peek into someone else’s soul you will realise that, despite our fundamental differences, we still have similar insecurities, make similar mistakes and have fought similar battles to become the people we are today.
What is your full name?
Angie Christina Howe.
How old are you?
How old do you feel?
I think I feel about 24 or 25. A lot of my friends are quite “settled” whereas I don’t feel anywhere near that stage. I’m still exploring the world and figuring out what I want out of life. Sometimes if I stop and remember how old I am, I start to worry that I’m leaving everything too late.
Where were you born, and where do you live now?
I was born in Auckland, lived in New Plymouth for a few years and now I’m living in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
What do you do for work?
I’m a registered nurse, currently working in an organ transplant unit in Riyadh – there are only two places in New Zealand that specialize in organ transplant so I feel really lucky to have had the opportunity to move to Saudi Arabia and work in this area. Prior to moving, I was working in an emergency department in New Zealand and I’ve realized that my passion definitely lies in emergency-care but I am still thoroughly enjoying my current learning experience.
What do you do for fun?
When I was living in New Zealand I loved going out for brunch, spending time with my sister and beautiful niece, or going out for a wine with friends. But now I’m living in Riyadh and this country can be quite restrictive in terms of socializing; Saudia Arabia is a “dry country” which means there’s no alcohol available to purchase or consume anywhere. It also isn’t very forthcoming to tourists so I feel extremely privileged to be here and am making the most of every opportunity to explore places like the desert and old souks (Arab markets). This country is not what people expect, it’s changing at such a rapid pace due to the new prince – they’ve just opened the first movie theatre here in over 40 years and I was lucky enough to go there the other night.
Did you go to university? If so, what did you study? If not, why?
I originally set my sights on becoming a Dietitian at Otago University, but I decided that path wasn’t for me and switched to a Nursing degree at Wintec in Hamilton, although I don’t regret my time in Otago because I made lifelong friends and memories. I also went on to do some post-graduate study through Auckland University.
What is your favourite movie of all time?
Ooh that’s a hard one! I’m a sucker for a romantic movie so probably Notting Hill or Love, Actually. In saying that, I also thoroughly enjoy the movie Straight Outta Compton. Haha.
What is the biggest risk you have ever taken that has paid off?
Moving to Saudi Arabia by myself. I always told myself that I’d take my career overseas for a while and I am so glad I took that leap of faith. I have never looked back, I’ve grown so much as a person and I’ve met some incredible people along the way.
Hardest moment of your twenties so far?
I’ve been in several long term relationships that have run their natural course and not worked out for various reasons. I think the hardest thing for me has been accepting that they weren’t right and ending them, rather than waiting for something bad to happen so I would have an excuse to leave. Moving away from my family and friends to a foreign country was also incredibly difficult.
Best moment of your twenties so far?
I’ve had a few! One was completing my Bachelor of Nursing, and then last year completing my Post Graduate Diploma.
The other was witnessing the birth of my first niece and spending a decent amount of time with her over the last two years. I love being an Aunty.
Who do you miss?
I miss my family so much. I’m glad I live in an age where video calling is so easy but it’s still hard not being able to leap through the phone and hug them. I’m also missing my friends a lot. One of my closest friends lives in Australia so I don’t see her near as often as I would like.
What do you like the most about yourself?
I have a strong set of beliefs and morals that I live by, and this spills over into my career in the sense that if I believe something isn’t right then I will speak up and stay true.
What do you like the least about yourself?
I worry too much what other people think, which is something I am trying to work on. I also tend to doubt my capabilities as a nurse and constantly worry that I haven’t done enough for my patients – I don’t give myself enough praise for the work I have done.
If you had to get a tattoo, what would you get? If you already have tattoos, which is your favourite and why?
I don’t have any tattoos. I have thought about it a lot but I’ve never committed to anything. One of my best friends is an incredibly talented artist so if I was to get a tattoo, I’d love her to design it.
How would your friends describe you?
I don’t like talking about myself so I asked my friends to give me a few words. “Loyal, caring, wise, selfless, the ‘go-to’ person.”
How would your parents describe you?
Caring, loving, a deep thinker, adventurous, independent, sensitive, an animal lover.
When was the last time you cried?
When two of my close friends got engaged. I was so excited and happy that I cried.
What are you afraid of?
I have a huge phobia of praying mantis!
I am afraid of missing out on too much of my niece’s life while she is young.
I am afraid of failure.
I am afraid of time running out and not achieving everything I want to achieve. I put a lot of pressure on myself and worry that I am not “keeping up”. Sometimes I feel like I’m falling behind because I’m on a different path to those around me; I’m not married or engaged, I don’t own a house and I don’t have any children.
If you could start your twenties again, what would you do differently?
I would tell myself to put more effort into exercising. I wouldn’t spend so much money on material things like clothes; it’s taken me moving across the world with only 23 kilos of luggage to realize how little I really need. If I could go back in time, I would tell myself to save my money for good skincare, adventures and experiences instead.