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8 months in Nova Scotia

8 months in Nova Scotia

Old Nov 12th 2011, 11:29 am
  #1  
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Default 8 months in Nova Scotia

8 months ago today we arrived and the reason I am very well aware is because Air Canada emailed us to check in online for our return flight home.

We left from LHR Terminal 3, we had tried to go alone to the airport but Pauls family and our best friend had insisted on seeing us off, they were so upset but we were just raring to go (harsh I know), as far as we were concerned we would see them again. I now know its always easier to leave than be left.

We arrived as visitors with our nomination in hand. We had sold our home, our wordly goods were on a ship somewhere between Halifax and Liverpool and we had return tickets as we did not yet have PR.

We were at the immigration desk for what seemed like ages whilst we were stamped in for 8 months stay and the immigration lady printed me pages detailing that we were allowed to look for work as we had NS nomination. She had been very keen to share that information with me and very friendly.

We then picked up the bags and the cat who was surprisingly fine - in fact his move to Canada was easier than our previous down the road move in England for him.

We were met by our realtor and friends and came out to a very bleak landscape, I guess it shouldnt have been a surprise given it was the 12th of March but the brown harshness everywhere was a surprise.

We then stayed two months with our realtor before moving into our home on May 10th. He was amazingly supportive and listened to hours of ranting and gave endless advice on everything from buying a hoover to bedlinen and paint. He made sure our children had birthday celebrations and went all out for Easter for them. He is now a great friend
I found a job within 3 weeks of arriving from a contact I had made whilst still in the UK. I had contacted the company that had a strategic alliance with the one I had been working with in England back in October and they had been happy for me to meet them when I arrived. I then spoke to them twice between Oct and March, just to let them know we were still on track for March. I really didnt expect a job but they offered me one as their accountant and I started nearly two months later. This was ideal as it gave us two months to get cars, buy house, sort out children and go to Florida to get TWP's

We went on a quick 5 days down to Florida to hang our with friends (it was hot and green and just plain wonderful to be with them) and on our return we activated temporary work visas. That was easy and painless, not sure if it was due to the midnight flight in or not.

Our new house is not what we originally thought we would buy but its a wonderful happy home in a great neighbourhood and every day I am grateful to be here.

Hubs took 6 months to find a job and in the end got his job from a contact around a firepit. Before that he spent endless nights and many hours replying to ads on careerbeacon etc to no avail. I am not sure if its due to his type of job - police - or what but it was networking that in the end, brought the only job offer. (He has since been offered an interview for the prison that he applied for back in May on careerbeacon)

That was pretty much the only hard part, he had left a job in England as a police investigator which he loved and he was respected for. To see him search and search for work night after night to no avail was tough.

My oldest child (seven) settled into school and my youngest went into daycare as she missed her friends so much. We had to pay out for that regardless of income as she needed the social aspect and missed her nursery back in England. Now, they are both with great babysitters after school for Chloe and during the day for Lily and Lily also has two days a week at a lovely pre-school.
I have found the pre-schools and daycare not to be so good here but maybe we had an outstanding one in England.

We had a great summer (the Canadians didnt think so) but to me it was seemingly endless days of heat and humidity and ceiling fans at night. The skies are enormous here and so beautiful, lakes are stunning, the beaches are wonderful. We made a decision to go out one day each weekend and we havent even touched on whats here to see. We havent been apple and blueberry picking yet, or gone to to see the Annapolis Valley and we only made it to the South Shore twice but hey its not going anywhere.

We have made some good friends and had great support. In September Pauls dad came out for a week and loved it here. I speak to my closest English friends a lot still (thankyou Skype)

We are different, more chilled and hands on in our lives, we didnt turn the TV on once in the summer. Work is good for me, ok for Paul (12 hour shifts are hard for him) and the girls play outside. We have a pool which we love.

I have learnt the following from this experience:
NS has terrible customer service and other things that frustrate me a lot, there really are 4 seasons in a year, its easier to leave than be left, that I cant under-estimate my childrens emotions in leaving friends, that we made the best decision ever.
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Old Nov 12th 2011, 4:29 pm
  #2  
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Default Re: 8 months in Nova Scotia

Sounds a bit like most first years!

Wonderful, frustrating, niggling, beautiful - all par for the course in settling into a new place. Sounds like you are going great guns - best wishes for the next 8 months!
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Old Nov 14th 2011, 5:00 pm
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Default Re: 8 months in Nova Scotia

Howefamily - what a wonderful insight, thank you for sharing. We've been here 3 months today and are still in the 'settling in' stage but loving every minute.
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Old Nov 29th 2011, 1:52 pm
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Default Re: 8 months in Nova Scotia

Thanks so much for sharing this. We are looking to come to NS and It's great to hear how its gone for other people. Hopefully one day, ill be posting my own update!
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Old Nov 29th 2011, 3:53 pm
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Default Re: 8 months in Nova Scotia

Thanks for sharing your 'story so far', it reflects what we are experiencing, we have been here 2 months now and just love it here. our network is going from strength to strength and we are getting out and about meeting new people and exploring our surroundings.
still haven't been to Peggys Cove but she will wait ;-)
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Old Nov 29th 2011, 11:38 pm
  #6  
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Default Re: 8 months in Nova Scotia

thank you! As I type this I am trying to find Charlie Boormans Extreme Frontiers - Canada to watch somehow. Apparently they show Nova Scotia this week, I didnt realise NS is an extreme frontier.
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