This has been bugging me for ages now, so today I do something about it. New Zealand is not an edge case!
This common view of the world puts the big continents in the middle. Then you can track more or less through Asia to Australia, and then there we are pretty much hanging off the edge of Australia, in danger of slipping right off the edge of the world.
In that view we may be at the ‘end of the rope’ but we’re well attached. Now consider this version of the same map. I’ve rearranged it to put New Zealand in the centre (horizontally, anyway):
I would have put New Zealand more in the centre vertically too, but my source map doesn’t show the Arctic and Antarctic regions.
This map gives a whole different feeling to New Zealand. This time you can easily see that apart from Australia we’re surrounded by a whole lot of ocean. If we go North and swerve past a few smaller islands there’s nothing but ocean. If we go East there’s nothing but ocean. We’re a long way from anywhere, really.
That’s all I wanted to say: we’re not on the edge of the world; we’re in the middle of the ocean.