just kidding, my one year post:)
One year today I have been here, the time has flown by, I can honestly say it has been the busiest year I have had also one of the hardest and most interesting.
First a bit of background, I got my visa based on my skills as a painter and decorator and had been working in property maintenance for the last ten years in the UK and even on the flight to Aus was expecting to find work as a painter or in property maintenance. Having already decided that Adelaide property was a good investment I cashed in my endowment and the shares I had from the company share save scheme and along with some of the proceeds of my wifeís property in China bought some property in Adelaide, house and land package over the internet in a place ivíe never been to, some told me I was brave most thought I was stupid but it turned out to be a good decision as I caught the tail end of the boom in Adelaide and the shares I had fell by 70% in the year after I sold them and as I was already on the property ladder in Adelaide I have not felt any pressure to buy a house (until recently) and as we have changed our mind about where to live about 8 or 9 time itís just as well.
We landed on a pleasant 25c day that felt very hot as we had come from the UK winter, and got a lift from the meet and greet people ( Dennis and Rene) to our OAA house in Nova Gardens, it was very dated and very basic but also very cheap it had a few strange but harmless neighbours but were pleased to have it. Next day we woke up to the first of what turned out to be a record breaking 15 days of 35c+ days and I also had tonsillitis so it was a bit of a struggle, just relaxed a bit then hired a car to get all the Medicare, driving licence, tax file number ect done in the city and also went to a new arrivals meet in arranged by immigration SA where I found out I did not need to do a years work in my trade, now as we had been dreaming about having a nice house , in the south , by the sea with only a small mortgage and me working as a painter I am not sure how it happened but after two weeks looking for businesses for sale we put in an offer for a cafť/coffee shop in North Adelaide and after a lot of messing about with the lease, 2 months after landing we owned a cafť, we had no experience at all, the bulk of our money had gone and if it did not work we would not see it again. We were expecting hard work and just as well, in the first few months we were working 150+ hours a week between us and though we made a wage if you worked out the hourly rate we were getting about the same as a 15 year old school boy pushing trolleys in Foodland. As we had no choice but to make it work for us we made changes to the way the shop was run before, by the man with 17 years experience, and some of the changes lost customers at first and we had some truly worrying times, we continued to change things behind the scenes and sometimes done a U turn when we had no choice and slowly things began to pay of, we have now managed to cut costs considerably and our turnover just keeps getting better, so much so that before a couple of months before Christmas we started to get a bit of free time, again I am not sure how it happened but we used this free time to look for premises for another business this time a traditional Chinese massage, and just before Christmas signed a lease for a shop at Mitcham Square.
Apart from the first two weeks after arrival we have only had Sunday afternoons and public holidays off work so come Christmas when we had a four days close down so we were off to the Gold coast, had a great time, lots to do, and intend to return, but canít imagine living there at least not in the touristy bit we went too.
On our return to Adelaide, back to work in the cafť, lots of work starting up the new business , centre management, designers, fit out, recruiting, ( I did the painting myself) for a while it was back to the long , long hours but as I write this we are about 2 weeks from opening and thing are looking up, we can see a time in the not too distant future when we will be able to take a day off now and again and perhaps even visit family in UK and China ( my wifeís relatives have been refused visa because we have a cafť) we are also looking for somewhere to buy to live in now as we are in a small flat and we donít like the letting agent coming round every few months telling us we did not dust the skirting behind the table properly and the shower door needs a bit more effort to get it to and acceptable standard.
This may not be the most exciting one year on update you will read, because it has not been the most exciting year, for the time we were working I donít think it would matter where in the world we were, and that was most of the time, the little time we have had off, we go to the hills, the beaches, the parks, and eat out regularly in the city this has made the work bearable, not exciting but interesting times for us, there have been many times when working as a painter and going home to the house by the sea has seemed such a attractive option and can understand why people choose it, but although hard work we have had opportunities here that we would not have had in the UK and if things go to plan, you never know in a few years time I may be asking Tyke for advice on buying a boat and fishing. I can not imagine not coming to Adelaide now, my life in the UK would have been so dull by comparison, hard, interesting, eventful, no regrets at all about coming here, year 2 , I am confident is going to be better, and I canít wait.
Also things I still donít know
Does Australia post deliver on a Saturday?
What is Manchester ? I know the are having a sale of it at Harvey Normans.
Why do they keep playing Kylie and Robbie doing it for the kids on the radio? has no one here listened to the lyrics.
What is the definition of a unit and how does it differ from a homette ?
Why can I only remember 4 questions when I had about 8 before I started this bottle of wine?