Guest Bluenose

My thoughts on UK after 6 week holiday

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    Guest Bluenose

    I've just returned home (Australia) after spending 6 weeks in the UK (South Shields mainly as this is where I'm from) but I did travel around a bit. I have to say that this trip back to my roots was a real eye opener for me and certainly clarified a few things. I realised that I'm far more Australian now than I ever imagined I would be or ever wanted to be! I was whistling the national anthem while shopping in Newcastle without realising it!! :eek: I've lived in Australia for 24 years having migrated with my folks at the age of 16. As I've said in previous posts it was personally hell on earth for me when I first arrived and I would get home sick all the time....missing everything that was familiar and especially my friends and family. Thankfully I stuck it out and honestly feel that I made the right decision about staying here.

     

    In all honesty I was shocked at the state of the UK. The sadness and struggle in people and the general negativity was depressing at times it was as if there was no hope or light at the end of the tunnel.

     

    Many ppl on this site often knock Australia (it's perfectly natural when you first arrive and I was certainly no different) for not being this or that and many have negative thoughts about the place and some of it is justified. However, I will agree that Australia has become very expensive over the last 10 years which is something I'd not noticed until I returned to the UK....I do think the mighty dollar played no small part in this. Housing did seem far more affordable in the UK but that could be down to the fact that the economy is so far down the tiolet that the arse has fallen out of the market + lets not forget the strong Dollar. Many mention the superior health system in the UK and I agree it does out shine the Aussie model but I wonder for how much longer this will be the case with the savage cuts the current government is about to unleash on the British people. It scared the crap out of me and I was a mere tourist! Another aspect that gets compared to is the "nightlife" etc....sorry but it's just not the same with many of the pubs etc now empty and struggling to survive....I was saddened to see so many pubs that have been in my town for 100+ years on the bones of their arses with 4-10 people in their premises on a friday night! :( Many people are staying home as it's cheaper and safer than going out at night.

     

    Another misconception is that there's nothing to do here. However, I think the main reason that people feel this way is that everything in the UK is so concentrated with people all squeezed into a small area and things are all very close making things far more accessable. Australia has everything that the UK has to offer but I think it suffers due to the distances you need to travel as everything is so spread out...I really was shocked at how close everything was compared to when I used to live there....things that I thought were a million miles away were actually about 5-10 miles away ha ha (Not sure if I'm explaining this very well)

     

    I spoke to many friends and family who were interested about what it was like to live in Australia as they were thinking of making the move but weren't 100% sure. I was honest about what it was like. We have our own problems and complaints and that it isn't easy making the move there. I certainly didn't sugar coat living in Australia. But if someone asked whether I made the right decision to live there the answer was always "yes" and "no" I wouldn't come back to the UK to live.

     

    If anyone has even the slightest doubt about making the move then DON'T DO IT!! You need to be 150% committed if you want to make it work and give yourselves at the very least 2 years living here!!! It is incredibly stressful and can put marriages and family under enormous pressure. Never ever underestimate homesickness and the sadness you will feel due to missing family & friends....trust me I know because I experienced it.

     

    I'm not trying to scare or put any one off from living here because in my opinion it's an AWESOME place to live (whether you agree or disagree with me is neither here nor there as this is only my opinion) I'm just trying to stop people from wasting their hard earned money + the HUGE stress of migrating here only to have an unreal expectation of what your new life will be like.

     

    Australia is not perfect and has many faults of it's own + many problems that are no different to the UK. I'm not going to say that it's an easy place to settle for many, though some do settle quickly, but I think LONG term Australia is the better option. I certainly would never say don't return home but I would strongly advise that anyone thinking of doing this to think about the reasons why you are going and try to make the decision to return home a decision of the head and not one of the heart because it could be a very expensive exercise. Easier said than done I know.

     

    As some may point out it could be where I was situated ie the North East + the extremely cold weather didn't help the general mood!!! But it seemed no different in the other parts of the country I visited. At the end of the day it's just my opinion of what I saw and experienced.

     

    Come to Australia with an open mind and remember that it's abit like being reborn.....If you embrace the country for what it is then I honestly think you will realise you've made the right decision if not now then in many years to come. :) I know I do.

     

    All the best and thanks for listening to my ramblings.

     

    Cheers

     

    J

     

    ps My holiday made me realise that I miss friends and family far more than the place itself.

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    Guest the4hopes

    Really good to read, excellent for teenagers to read who are concerned about moving, you went through it and 24 years later you're still here, its strange to think my 2 girls will be calling themselves Aussies in the future, and nice they still have memories from the UK just like you must have.

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    Thanks so much for taking the time to write this - it makes very interesting reading.

     

    I was just thinking today that it probably is the best of all worlds at the moment to be an English Cricket Fan living in Australia - all the best things about living here (the summer climate, the space, the birds, etc etc) and still the pride in an English team that can win something!

     

    Going back myself to the olde country for the first time in four years or so this July, so will be very interesting to see how things have or haven't changed. VAT is now 20% there so perhaps that will make things more expensive, but I must admit when I heard all the furore about Uni fees in the UK, (which with two teenagers would affect our family if we were there) I said a small prayer of thanks

     

    D

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    Guest Tterrier81

    have to quote everone else here, brilliant post, and it was very helpful for me as im returning for a holiday in april for the first time after being here 7 years, its not just a holiday, its also to give me reassurance as to why im here, i been a fair bit homesick lately and this post has helped out a lot, also the part about the pubs being empty, i used to love the buzz of the local on a friday and saturday night, just hope my old local wont be too bad as thats where i'll most likely be spending a fair few hours, i hear there still open so thats a start

     

    cheers

     

    dan

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    Wonderful post. Thank you :)

     

    Have to say, I do agree with a fair bit of what you've written. Still living in the UK I know its not all roses here and hubby and I know deep down that moving back to Australia is what we want to do and know it will be for the best in the long term. He's been gone from Adelaide for 5 years now and by the time we move back it'll be 7 or so. He misses home and we know that for our son to grow up, Australia has far more to offer than the UK.

     

    What you noticed about the nightlife and so on. It is true. So many places are closing, booze in supermarkets is dirt cheap so people stay home. Pubs are dying out in many towns. We hardly go out here, the odd trip to the cinema or dinner but really don't have a nightlife social life in the UK. In Aus we are often out and about in the evenings and enjoy it far more.

     

    And yes, the NHS cutbacks and uni fees going up so much is hard news for many.

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    Guest Bluenose

    Hi guys

     

    Thanks for the positive feedback. I was a little worried that I might come across as "anti UK" which wasn't my intention + I'm still rather jet lagged and may not have explained myself very well. :)

     

    I'm sure there'll be people who will come to Australia make a real go of it, fail to settle, make the decision to return home and never look back. **Big Thumbs up to them**

     

    Australia is not for everyone (like many things in life)....I'm just glad that it's the place for me...a place that I'm proud of and more importantly a place I can call home.

     

    Thanks again.

     

    J

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    Guest Nicky&Andy

    a really good post to read, its certainly not all swings and round abouts, more big a high rollercaster certainly does push relationships to the limit , to me its got to be worth it , you summed it all up pretty well for me , i'll let you know in 24yrs

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    Guest karyn

    Thanks very much for that!

    I've just moved over from the UK, and although the homesickness isn't that bad yet, I"m sure it will come!!

    You've reminded me of the reasons that I'm over here, and given me an extra oomph to find the motivation to stick it out!

    I hope to have a family out here, and I know in the long term Australia will be better than the UK! Certainly lifestyle wise, without getting political about all the other stuff!

    So thanks again!

    x

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    Guest kangomik

    Very well written, it is interesting to see your opinions on the UK and how things have changed.

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    Guest tezza

    A brilliant post, we are in thoughts about moving and what you have said has helped heaps.

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    Thanks for your post - Great to read! Particularly relevant for me as I live in the North East and did live in South Shields for several years (still spend a lot of time there with family.)

    I have had a few little wobbles and doubts over the Australia move just these last few weeks (totally unlike me as I have always been 110% behind it) and even though I had overcome them your post has sealed the deal for me. Bring on the visa! Thank you! ;)

    PS I went down the Quayside in Newcastle on New Years Eve. (A few years ago you wouldn't be able to move and there would be fireworks off the tyne bridge.) We booked a table in a restaurant - we were the only ones in and spent midnight in the bar with only 4 people in.... me and the 3 people I went with!!!!

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    Excellent, objective, well written post :)

    My other half has been back to the UK twice since we moved to Aus, his comments completely echo your own, with the feeling of depression and no light at the end of the tunnel back in the UK.

    My other half and my oldest daughter both experienced homesickness, to a degree that we almost went back aftere only 6 months or so, thankfully we stuck it out (took 150% of trying and then some) we're all still here though and i know it was definantly the right move for us.

    One area i would disagree with though is that the NHS model of care is better than here in Aus, our experience is very different, you don't have to wait for weeks/months for referrals to specialists/CT's/MRIs here, ok you have to contribute something to Medicare, but if the NHS did something similar it wouldn't be in the mess it's in :)

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    Thanks for sharing this - what a great read. It makes you feel privileged & lucky to be here compared to what's happening over in the UK, where many are having to reapply for jobs they've been in for years.

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    I've also just returned back from a 4 week trip to the UK and totally agree with the OP. I have been in Oz nearly 9 years and I hated being in the UK. Everyone I spoke to was so negative about everything. In fact, I tried to bring my flight forward by 1 week because I wanted to go "home" (yes I call Australia home now) so badly.

     

    When my flight was landing into Adelaide, I cried and thought to myself, this place is bloody awesome! I love Adelaide!

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    Guest kangomik

    Awww Moosh it must have been such a relief to get back home.

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