I have been lurking for a while on the forum and seeing all the posts have made me more and more excited (and more and more nervous) about the big move.
I'm Australian, from Port Augusta, where I lived until I was 18, and then I moved to Adelaide for Uni (dropped out) and then college until I was 21, where I moved first to Pitlochry in Scotland (I'm half Scottish) and then to London, and I have been away for almost 14 years.
I *love* London, it's an incredible city, and I love the UK. Even my accent is English (a cross between posh SW London and not so posh S London (Brixton)). But I have also been missing my family, I am sick of the hustle and bustle and the monotony of my life. I want sunshine, I want to slow down, I want a new adventure.
My husband has never been to Australia, he has always lived in London, and is even more fed up with the hustle and bustle. He is very excited to go. It's his last day at work today (we hope, it was supposed to be last Friday but the company he works for is useless and still hasn't hired so someone to replace him although he gave them 10 weeks notice, so who knows), and he is very happy. He's spent his whole life working his bottom off for not much money, never having a break between jobs, never long holidays, only ever had 2 weeks off of work in one go, when our son was born. He can't wait to have a couple of months off before he gets a new job, to enjoy being a daddy and enjoy his new life.
We have an 8 month old son, who has dual nationality. One of the huge reasons we are moving over to Australia (aside from me wanting to be close to my family) is the prohibative cost of childcare in the UK and the fact we want another child. The local nursery on my street is £1300 a month. Hubby only makes £1450 a month and I only make £1800, which almost makes it pointless for one of us to work, a 2 bed flat in our area is around £1500 a month, so you can just imagine the life we would have, and the life we would give our son here. We couldn't afford 2 children.
In Adelaide, the houses are cheaper (my sister is building one out McLaren Flats for about £240K I think, a big one), you wouldn't even get a studio in my area for that. In Adelaide we have free childcare (my parents, who won't hear of us putting him in nursery for more than a day a week, they already look after my sisters kids, and love it). In Adelaide we can stay with my parents rent and bill free for as long as we like (we're going to try to do 2 years) to save up for a mortgage.
My husband has not got his visa yet (eek!). We lodged July 3rd and were told they were operating at 5-6 months in London for a partner visa, well it has been 6 months and 5 days, and we're still waiting. We spoke with our CO at the beginning of Dec and he said that processing times had not changed for us, but nothing has happened yet, our CO has not returned my latest email from a week ago and not been at his desk when I have called, so I am hoping he is not off really sick or on a big long holiday, as we're getting super close to D Day. We may have to get a tourist visa for hubby but I am still hoping his visa will come through.
Hubby is also only eligible for a TR visa as we had not lived together long enough (not to prove it anyway) for him to get a PR. Annoyingly, we found out after we lodged, that hubby could have gone to Oz on a tourist visa and we could have lodged onshore - and had we done this, we would have lived together long enough now for him to get a subclass 100 (PR). Grrr. So we can't get a mortgage for 2 years until he gets PR I believe, which is annoying.
Anyway, sorry for this long post, I have lots going through my head at the moment and just want to get it out :)
I am really excited to go back. Excited to see my family, excited to spend more time with my niece and nephew, excited to be able to buy a good sized house at some point, excited to give hubby an adventure, excited for the sunshine.
I'm sad to leave London. I have amazing friends here and I have had an incredible life here. I am scared that Adelaide won't keep me happy. I'm scared hubby will hate it. I'm scared we will get rubbish jobs. Neither of us have degrees, and both our jobs are quite low paid. I'm hoping to go back to uni while I'm there and make the most of the free childcare, so I can get a degree and a well paying job, but I am scared life will get in the way and I won't manage it. I'm scared I won't have the friends in Adelaide that I have here (I know I will). I'm scared I've become too English to ever become Australian again.
Anyway, thanks for reading! For myself, reading all the posts and threads have got me excited (the positive ones) and nervous (the ones where people hate it and want to go back to the UK). I'm trying to ignore the negative and read more positive now that reality is starting to sink in and it's starting to hit me - we really are moving to the other side of the world! Hopefully I might meet some of you at a meet up at some point, we arrive Feb 16th (10 days first in Thailand, lovely).