Back in the UK 10 months now...bumpy ride!
I know this might go in the Back to the UK section but as I was in NZ for 8+ years I thought I would post here.
It has been a very very bumpy ride so far, with some things great and some not so great.
For me, work has been good, I am actually down in Plymouth now and the job is excellent with really good prospects that I can probably take advantage of in 2-3 years, when we have already decided we will be moving on. Quite where to, I really don't know just now.
Glad to be back and nearer to my mum who is having cardiac investigations at the moment as she has really deteriorated in the past 6 months or so with her breathing. She can't really manage more than about 20m without becoming very short of breath. So being here and not Auckland helps for now. Mr SD's mum has also deteriorated in overall health, she is almost 80, so the fact we are here is good.
Mr SP hasn't had such a good time. After his collapse en route to Heathrow from LAX last year, he just hasn't quite bounced back and probably due to the ageist job market could only get a part time job in Tesco in Manchester, and now we are down here there is very little for him - so he is struggling mentally with being in this situation especially after having earned $100K+ in Auckland. He is thinking of re-training, so something useful he can take elsewhere would be a good plan.
Our girls are in London and not Edinburgh - but at least that is nearer me in Devon and I've been up twice in the last two weeks alone. Times are hard there to be honest - and our younger one is struggling to secure a decent role, which is hard to grasp considering she is well qualified and has experience, but most of her education and experience is kiwi!
As for the shopping - there is actually too much now in comparison to Albany Mall - oh the times i have wanted the shops and now I can't cope! Too much choice is a problem too.
Prices are cheaper for some things - but maybe not as much as you think. M&S food hall is better than I remembered but general supermarket goods I'm not so sure about. Yes cheaper, but some things were certainly of a better quality if NZ and a decent steak has, so far, been hard to find. I do miss Freedom Furniture for my regular cushion renewal and some of the independent stores too for nice items and on occasions even the Warehouse - can't believe I said that!
Miss some of the weather, don't miss the NZ driving. I do miss the asian food influences for sure and the sushi - don't get me started on the rubbish here; and the coffee shops - here Costa is everywhere and it is garbage.
Overall, the jury is still out on whether we really did make the right decision, but for now we are here and have to make the most of it. Will we return...who knows to be honest but not until I have more experience in my new field and the dog is no longer with us - she can't do that journey for a fifth time and my bank account can't afford it either!
So from an overcast Devon, where at least I do get to work from home when I want to - I will say g'day and you never ever know what the future will bring!