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One Year back in the UK: My Reflections

One Year back in the UK: My Reflections

Old Jun 5th 2008, 1:07 am
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Default One Year back in the UK: My Reflections

On May 10th of last year, I touched down at Heathrow having spent the past two years living in the USA. Although I left New Jersey a little prematurely (as far as I'm concerned) for personal reasons (yes, that means you -whore!) I guess it's time to reflect on the past year an talk about what I've learnt from my experiences. So let's start off with the classic British moan: the weather. When I left Newark airport last year, the weather was sunny and pushing into the 80's in terms of temperature. I came back to the UK to experience one of the coldest and wettest summers on record. So that's 1-0 USA so far! Another thing that struck me was the expense of everything here as opposed to America. Whether it be TV subscriptions, internet access or even basic consumer goods (televsions, etc.) the UK is a very expensive place to live. When I left the UK a pint of lager in my local was £2.35 and now it's £2.70. However the minimum wage doens't seem to have increased all that much. Don't even get me started on fuel prices here. It's embarrassing to even suggest a comparison to fuel prices in the USA. Even for New Jersey, which has some of the highest fuel prices in the USA, it still looks cheap in comparison the the UK. Sad things is that a lot of the cost of petrol in the UK is tax. Which is another thing: what's going on with taxes in the UK? Well the newspapers published several MP's expense claims, so I guess we know now. Crime in the UK: at least in the USA there were no go areas, and you knew not to go there. But in the UK, the gangs of feral chavs seem to be everywhere causing bother. And the police don't seem to bother doing anything about them, as they're too busy picking on motorists and people who overfill their wheelie bins! Knife crime seems to be the big thing in the news at the moment (and yes, I mean the news in general. Not just the usual scaremongering newspapers). Why do so many people carry knives these days, I though this was a civilised country. But when so many people are going out 'tooled up' we look more like some tin-pot banana republic. Then there is the welfare dependancy. Note, I'm not getting at everyone on benefits. The great thing about the UK is that it offers a safety net to those who are down on their luck. But the system was never designed as a long term means of support for people. So it makes me mad as fook when I have to work my arse off to pay for people who have never worked and have no intention of working, to sit around smoking and popping out more little chav babies (who, inevitably I'll end up paying for). But one good thing about the UK is the cost of education. I'm paying a little over £3000 a year to go to law school here, whereas if I was still in the USA I dare not even hazard a guess at what it would cost me. Another plus for the UK is the countryside. Not much of that in the Tristate Area, lol. But on the flip side you can hardly compare Newcastle and Durham to New York City in terms of sights and things to do (although they are still a good night on the piss!). So in conclusion, if you're ever lucky enough to get out of the UK: don't come back. Your initial issues with the place will not only still be there, but they will seem a whole lot worse having been away for a while. And that is why I waited a year to reflect properly in regards to my return. No knee-jerk reactions, just expereinces from a re-adjusted former ex-pat.............
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Old Jun 5th 2008, 1:41 am
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Default Re: One Year back in the UK: My Reflections

Now this is very ineresting. These views are generally expressed by people wanting to leave or have left. Then they are dismissed by some as Daly Mail nonsense and ex-pats are even accused of saying it only to justify their decision to live wherever they have moved to when they can't find much nice to say about the new home - as if the person making the accusation knows everything about that individual based on a few lines on a forum.

It's the first time I've seen someone saying this stuff having returned to the UK permanently.

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Old Jun 5th 2008, 1:47 am
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Default Re: One Year back in the UK: My Reflections

Originally Posted by BristolUK View Post
Now this is very ineresting. These views are generally expressed by people wanting to leave or have left. Then they are dismissed by some as Daly Mail nonsense and ex-pats are even accused of saying it only to justify their decision to live wherever they have moved to when they can't find much nice to say about the new home - as if the person making the accusation knows everything about that individual based on a few lines on a forum.

It's the first time I've seen someone saying this stuff having returned to the UK permanently.
Unfortunately it's not the first time I have and it's worrying...but I have to say I've not seen/experienced it when I go back for visits.

Last edited by Jerseygirl; Jun 5th 2008 at 2:43 am.
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Old Jun 5th 2008, 2:29 am
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Default Re: One Year back in the UK: My Reflections

One mans Hell is anothers paradise!!!!!!

pray tel how you managed to get home rate University fees when you have been out of the country for 2 years????????

Dont think you have come back in the right frame of mind really if you came back for personal reasons and calling them a WH*RE...................
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Old Jun 5th 2008, 2:40 am
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Default Re: One Year back in the UK: My Reflections

Alot of anger mixed with love....can pull you either way. Good post in general, but we all expect different things and we have to accept that good comes with the bad no matter where we settle.
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Old Jun 5th 2008, 3:48 am
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Default Re: One Year back in the UK: My Reflections

Originally Posted by BristolUK View Post
Now this is very ineresting. These views are generally expressed by people wanting to leave or have left. Then they are dismissed by some as Daly Mail nonsense.
but from what I remember of Dave's political opinions when he was a regular poster he struck me very much as a typical Daily Mail reader in many regards.
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Old Jun 5th 2008, 5:08 am
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Default Re: One Year back in the UK: My Reflections

I'm just wondering why you left the UK in the first place, and why you went back.....you say your return was for "personal reasons"....that could be anything from a failed relationship to running out of money. Both are personal.....but you sound very angry! Did you return to take advantage of the education system? And when (if) you qualify, where will you go then?
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Old Jun 5th 2008, 5:13 am
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Default Re: One Year back in the UK: My Reflections

Originally Posted by NJ_Dave View Post
So in conclusion, if you're ever lucky enough to get out of the UK: don't come back. Your initial issues with the place will not only still be there, but they will seem a whole lot worse having been away for a while. And that is why I waited a year to reflect properly in regards to my return. No knee-jerk reactions, just expereinces from a re-adjusted former ex-pat.............
I was in Canada for a little under two years and came back to UK for personal reasons also, (not the same type as Dave though!). Now I am back in Canada.

I agree with Dave in that 'your initial issues with the place will still be there'. With the emphasis very much on your issues. When you move you go with you, so don't expect a country to change your views. That is up to you.

For me, once I changed my view and was able to start seeing the positives it changed things dramatically. There are always evidence of good and bad things, it just depends on what you are focusing on as to what you choose to 'see'.
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Old Jun 5th 2008, 5:17 am
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Default Re: One Year back in the UK: My Reflections

Gawd........I just noticed, even your avatar is angry!
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Old Jun 5th 2008, 12:48 pm
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Default Re: One Year back in the UK: My Reflections

Originally Posted by tillysmum View Post
One mans Hell is anothers paradise!!!!!!

pray tel how you managed to get home rate University fees when you have been out of the country for 2 years????????
I have my ways

Dont think you have come back in the right frame of mind really if you came back for personal reasons and calling them a WH*RE...................
I didn't come back in the right frame of mind. These are my reflections AFTER A YEAR back in the UK, not merely initial reactions......
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Old Jun 5th 2008, 12:49 pm
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Default Re: One Year back in the UK: My Reflections

Originally Posted by elfman View Post
but from what I remember of Dave's political opinions when he was a regular poster he struck me very much as a typical Daily Mail reader in many regards.
Nah mate, more like The Sun. The Mail has too many big words for me....
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Old Jun 5th 2008, 1:03 pm
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Default Re: One Year back in the UK: My Reflections

We're in Jersey and I actually think all our utilities etc on a par with the UK, in fact I think we are paying more in gas and electric than we did in Sheffield! Consumer goods are cheaper here but I'd say cost of living is about the same.
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Old Jun 5th 2008, 1:19 pm
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Default Re: One Year back in the UK: My Reflections

the UK is a very expensive place to live
The US is unusual for having such low costs of fuel. The UK is not the most expensive place in Europe for petrol, I think it comes 6th. I live in Italy and the cost of living is equal to the UK but with lower wages
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Old Jun 5th 2008, 3:20 pm
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Default Re: One Year back in the UK: My Reflections

Originally Posted by NJ_Dave View Post
On May 10th of last year, I touched down at Heathrow having spent the past two years living in the USA. Although I left New Jersey a little prematurely (as far as I'm concerned) for personal reasons (yes, that means you -whore!) I guess it's time to reflect on the past year an talk about what I've learnt from my experiences. So let's start off with the classic British moan: the weather. When I left Newark airport last year, the weather was sunny and pushing into the 80's in terms of temperature. I came back to the UK to experience one of the coldest and wettest summers on record. So that's 1-0 USA so far! Another thing that struck me was the expense of everything here as opposed to America. Whether it be TV subscriptions, internet access or even basic consumer goods (televsions, etc.) the UK is a very expensive place to live. When I left the UK a pint of lager in my local was £2.35 and now it's £2.70. However the minimum wage doens't seem to have increased all that much. Don't even get me started on fuel prices here. It's embarrassing to even suggest a comparison to fuel prices in the USA. Even for New Jersey, which has some of the highest fuel prices in the USA, it still looks cheap in comparison the the UK. Sad things is that a lot of the cost of petrol in the UK is tax. Which is another thing: what's going on with taxes in the UK? Well the newspapers published several MP's expense claims, so I guess we know now. Crime in the UK: at least in the USA there were no go areas, and you knew not to go there. But in the UK, the gangs of feral chavs seem to be everywhere causing bother. And the police don't seem to bother doing anything about them, as they're too busy picking on motorists and people who overfill their wheelie bins! Knife crime seems to be the big thing in the news at the moment (and yes, I mean the news in general. Not just the usual scaremongering newspapers). Why do so many people carry knives these days, I though this was a civilised country. But when so many people are going out 'tooled up' we look more like some tin-pot banana republic. Then there is the welfare dependancy. Note, I'm not getting at everyone on benefits. The great thing about the UK is that it offers a safety net to those who are down on their luck. But the system was never designed as a long term means of support for people. So it makes me mad as fook when I have to work my arse off to pay for people who have never worked and have no intention of working, to sit around smoking and popping out more little chav babies (who, inevitably I'll end up paying for). But one good thing about the UK is the cost of education. I'm paying a little over £3000 a year to go to law school here, whereas if I was still in the USA I dare not even hazard a guess at what it would cost me. Another plus for the UK is the countryside. Not much of that in the Tristate Area, lol. But on the flip side you can hardly compare Newcastle and Durham to New York City in terms of sights and things to do (although they are still a good night on the piss!). So in conclusion, if you're ever lucky enough to get out of the UK: don't come back. Your initial issues with the place will not only still be there, but they will seem a whole lot worse having been away for a while. And that is why I waited a year to reflect properly in regards to my return. No knee-jerk reactions, just expereinces from a re-adjusted former ex-pat.............
Bleeding hell, if ever one wanted to top oneself then this post might be just the thing to tip them over the edge!!

I think we all know the downsides of England with regards to its current economic state and the ever increasing taxes etc; however you mention virtually nothing of the wonderful sides to Britain- the culture, galleries, theaters, nightlife, bustling cities, rolling hills, cultural awareness (i.e. the world doesnt simply consist of Australians/Americans) the constant opportunities to develop and better yourself, the proximity to Europe, the desire as a nation to see and experience other places. I could go on.

Im not trying to rubbish your opinions, because they're personal and from experience and largely very true. I just think it's strange that you've been back for a whole year and yet these hostile feelings are all you have left in you. There's no arguing that the problems you discuss are real in Britain, but you seem to have forgotten the context that they're in, i.e. that for every negative side of our country there are 5 positives and the fact that these issues are by no means exclusively British. Many of the negative things that you say about Britain are not solely a British problem but exist to varying degrees in many places; yes Britain (and most of the world) has a knife-crime issue, but every other bleeding American is packing a gun!!! And while what you say about the problems with people claiming benefits in the UK can be frustrating, no system in any country is foolproof, and i'd rather live in a country that has a system that offers help to people when they need it, because you never know where you'll find yourself one day.

Perhaps you'd better hotfoot it back to the states before you do yourself some harm with all this anger :curse: Perhaps you'll find your inner ray of sunshine there? Or perhaps not.

Last edited by hotel44; Jun 5th 2008 at 3:25 pm. Reason: Spelling initially compromised by frustration!
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Old Jun 5th 2008, 3:55 pm
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Default Re: One Year back in the UK: My Reflections

Originally Posted by hotel44 View Post
Bleeding hell, if ever one wanted to top oneself then this post might be just the thing to tip them over the edge!!

I think we all know the downsides of England with regards to its current economic state and the ever increasing taxes etc; however you mention virtually nothing of the wonderful sides to Britain- the culture, galleries, theaters, nightlife, bustling cities, rolling hills, cultural awareness (i.e. the world doesnt simply consist of Australians/Americans) the constant opportunities to develop and better yourself, the proximity to Europe, the desire as a nation to see and experience other places. I could go on.

Im not trying to rubbish your opinions, because they're personal and from experience and largely very true. I just think it's strange that you've been back for a whole year and yet these hostile feelings are all you have left in you. There's no arguing that the problems you discuss are real in Britain, but you seem to have forgotten the context that they're in, i.e. that for every negative side of our country there are 5 positives and the fact that these issues are by no means exclusively British. Many of the negative things that you say about Britain are not solely a British problem but exist to varying degrees in many places; yes Britain (and most of the world) has a knife-crime issue, but every other bleeding American is packing a gun!!! And while what you say about the problems with people claiming benefits in the UK can be frustrating, no system in any country is foolproof, and i'd rather live in a country that has a system that offers help to people when they need it, because you never know where you'll find yourself one day.

Perhaps you'd better hotfoot it back to the states before you do yourself some harm with all this anger :curse: Perhaps you'll find your inner ray of sunshine there? Or perhaps not.
I'm actually rather happy with my life at the moment. I'm merely pointing out a few of my country's inadequacies, and not my own. As for your points: culture-dying out with the older generation. NuLab are all about multiculturalism, which doesn't really work when it is simply inflicted upon you. Galleries and theatres -yeah, like we're the only country in the world that has those. Nightlife -12 pints, a kebab and a fight. Classy! Bustling cities -yeah great, except that they're all turning into clones of one another. Cultural awareness -again a dying breed. Half of today's British youth thing that culture has something to do with growing cannabis. Opportunies to better one's self -opportunities are there, but you still have to take them. More and more kids are dropping out of school at 16 with no ambitions other than signing on the dole. Proximity to Europe -you say that like it's a good thing? And as for desire to see and experience new places -that's because a lot of Brits hate the place and want to get out! And as for your point on every other American carrying a gun -sigh, that old stereotype again?
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