Seven weeks

Old Dec 1st 2007, 9:05 pm
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Default Seven weeks

Hi all, thought I would pop a little post on here. I was originally paulainspain but lost password etc so changed name. We were stuck in Spain trying to sell our property I was so worried about coming over without enough money it caused me endless sleepless nights, but with Simon being offered a job here, (originally we were coming on a student visa) we decided to take the plunge. The colapse in the market in Spain meant we didnt sell and they are still on the market, could be a couple of years before they (Villa and apartment if anyone is interested ) do sell, anyway that aside here goes.

Had a great night out to say goodbye to my pals in Spain, all very emotional but good nonetheless. I flew with the boys and my MIL who had come over to help me pack up in Spain, from Alicante to Gatwick, Mum, Simon and other members of the family met us there and we all drove up to Heathrow, had a spot of lunch and then onto the airport, too many tears to mention saying goodbye but we didnt want them to park up so they dropped us off with a big wave and our adventure beginning. Entered Heathrow, crikey it is a dump and I hate it there but hey that's where our flight was from, got to Singapore airlines desk with 180kg of luggage, we are allowed 80kg between the four of us so that was fun relocating clothes etc into back packs and hand luggage, they wanted to charge us over 500 pounds excess but then gave us 30kg each extra, we managed to send one bag by sea with a baggage company there for 90 pounds and paid I think another 130 pounds for the rest, I didnt want to leave anything so we took the hit, plus had to pay extra at Sydney not wise when you are on a tight budget. That aside we went through to the lounge, what a queue to get in there, nightmare! forgot about contact lens solution in hand bag so had that confiscated! Bought more at Boots. Boarded the plane and waited and waited and waited. Five hours we sat on the plane for One of the engines wouldnt work, you could hear it trying to turnover, the pilot kept us informed but to be honest I was happy when they said everyone off, we had to stay in a hotel for the night, didnt fancy taking off with a dodgy engine! The staff on the plane were super and the boys were fine with their inflight entertainment but once we got off they were getting grumpy, it was 3.15am we had to stand in the cold to get bussed to a hotel and then wait to check in, 4.45am we eventually got to our rooms, what a day Anyway you are probably falling asleep by now so I will move on quickly. The following day we boarded our flight at 5.15pm and were off, hooray, it worked out to be a 19 hour delay, the excitement had worn a little.

We had a few hours to kill in Singapore because we had missed our overnight stay on Sentosa Island, our refund should be arriving soon. But they sent us to the rainforest lounge at the airport where we had something to eat, a nap and a massage, would recommend it, (paid for by Singapore I might add). Stopped at bag xray again had my contact lens solution oops, but he told me I could keep it. Next leg of the journey was from Singapore to Sydney, we were stopped at immigration because i had delcared tobacco on the list (meant to give it to my mum at Gatwick but forgot), Simons shoes came under observation because he hadnt cleaned them, He was told off and lectured about the equine flu here and the UK foot and mouth but fortunately we werent fined, they took the shoes away and cleaned them (thanks very much) and sent us on our way. We loved sydney. Simon met his new boss for the first time and the boys and I did the sight seeing thing, people were friendly and the place was great. Had a terrible plague of moths though which wasnt Harrys cup of tea but they only really came out at dusk and didnt bother you. I suffered terrible jet lag for almost a week, I felt very unbalanced and so tired all the time, as though I was hungover constantly, but I couldnt care less as felt so happy to be in Australia finally. It felt surreal standing next to the Sydney opera house or the bridge after seeing it so many times on the TV or in photographs, to be actually there and seeing it with my own eyes, wow we made it. Next leg of the journey was to fly into Brisbane, Virgin Blue staff were great at check in concerning our vast amounts of luggage and let us off a great deal, even at bag xray I had my manicure set with scissors and the guy walked back with Simon to put them in our hold bags! Contact lens solution confiscated this time, will I never learn? Great flight upto Brisbane only 1.15 hours. Picked up hire car and drove to Thornlands near Cleveland. We had 3 weeks there and really enjoyed our time, we had a super rental although expensive we were right next to a park so the boys played out whenever they had the chance. I loved Cleveland and didnt want to leave but the Gold Coast beckoned. Raby bay is a lovely place to have a drink and a meal at, the Cleveland library is full of helpful staff who sent emails for us, couldnt fault anyone we met there. We visited Manly for Halloween that is a must, they have a super parade with lots to do for all the family and they had an open air cinema set up in the evening showing Monster house, with the huge bats flying overhead it really set the scence for the night. Considering the country is having its worst drought I was pleasantly surprised to see how green it was everywhere, I appreciate inland it is a different story but coming from the Costa Blanca where it is so baren its really lush here. We drove and drove and drove, it was tiresome trying to find a rental, the prices were going up every week but we eventually found a 4 bed 2 bath in Carrara, Gold Coast, we needed the extra bedroom for Simon's home office. I love it here yes I know its early days yet but we have been away from the UK for four years and that was hard, just speaking English to everyone makes all the difference, you forget how important language is. We have ploughed through our money paying for rental, car hire and getting settled but we still have a little left and Simon is going to be paid for the month of November so we will be fine. The boys had been off school for 4 months so they really needed to get back into a routine so I found a local school, Worongary and they started the following day, they love it, both have made lots of friends and are taking part in school clubs and after school clubs. Harry plays Cricket and George is surfing and having Karate lessons, it keeps them and us busy and I have found they are settling so quickly. I am not the most outgoing person so making friends will be a little more difficult but I'll get there, I need to join a club myself. Simon loves Golf and has a chat to people when Harry is playing criket, he loves it here, he had 9 months back in the UK with work before we came here which he hated so he is extremely happy to be here. We made the decision to come to Australia for our future happiness and even after these few weeks I feel we have made the right choice. I dont have the homesickness as much here because of our move to Spain so I think that has made it a lot easier, but I do miss my girlfriends. We arranged Medicare without any problems, although being on the 457 you have to apply annually. We applied for Queensland driving licences which took 30 mins from start to finish, had the visas put into our passports because they had been done online, we have got finance for 2 cars which we picked up on Friday, have broadband now which is a lifesaver and friendly neighbours who offer to mow our lawn! We have found eating fish and chips is the cheapest meal going and delicious $11.00 for the 4 of us, that is 2 children and 2 adults. We have eaten at Sizzlers which was fun and not bad value, one Chinese meal that was outrageously overpriced and one meal at Hogsbreath, fantastic steak, but a real treat. We have yet to buy a BBQ or to have one at the beach but there are many facilities locally for us to do this. I look forward to making friends and having a social life but I know that will come in time, Christmas will be a quiet affair but we will make the most of it. To all of you waiting to take the plunge good luck, at the moment we are happy to have dived in, we have a visa for 4 years which allows us time to get a good feel for the place and decide what our next move will be, I hope we will decide to stay here but we are keeping an open mind and staying positive. Hope I havent bored you too much, it wasnt a little post after all. Paula
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Old Dec 2nd 2007, 12:07 am
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Default Re: Seven weeks

Great read, glad to hear that you are all enjoying it. You seem to have the right attitude, very positive!

We have been in brissy for a year now and still love everyday! My grandma has phoned from the UK this morning and asked if we ever feel like coming 'home'. I said 'i am home'!! She giggled and said that was the right answer, bless her!

Best wishes to you all.

Melis
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Old Dec 2nd 2007, 4:03 am
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Default Re: Seven weeks

Originally Posted by Daz n Mel View Post
Great read, glad to hear that you are all enjoying it. You seem to have the right attitude, very positive!

We have been in brissy for a year now and still love everyday! My grandma has phoned from the UK this morning and asked if we ever feel like coming 'home'. I said 'i am home'!! She giggled and said that was the right answer, bless her!

Best wishes to you all.

Melis
Thanks Melis, nice for you that you feel you are home, again I think a lot of it is down to a positive outlook and approach. Good luck to your 2nd year.
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Old Dec 2nd 2007, 4:52 am
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Default Re: Seven weeks

Glad you are settling in well, it does take time to get a social life going again but it does happen - usually as you are just about to think it will never happen!
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Old Dec 2nd 2007, 5:20 am
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Default Re: Seven weeks

Originally Posted by rebnatoli View Post
Glad you are settling in well, it does take time to get a social life going again but it does happen - usually as you are just about to think it will never happen!
I'm sure it will and look forward to the social times, just seems a long way off at the moment. Thanks
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Old Dec 2nd 2007, 6:21 pm
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Default Re: Seven weeks

what a lovely post
you and your family appear to be very settled.
good luck in the future
bec
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Old Dec 2nd 2007, 11:22 pm
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Sounds like you're all settling in well. Good luck to you.
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Old Dec 4th 2007, 8:16 pm
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Default Re: Seven weeks

Hi
we have been in australia now for 14 weeks in Robina on the Gold coast and are loving every minute of life here.. weather, beaches, shopping, outdoor activities.... and the family from uk have started booking their holidays over for next year..
have a good warm christmas everyone and a happy new year!!!
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Old Dec 5th 2007, 8:04 pm
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Default Re: Seven weeks

Originally Posted by sa2uk2oz View Post
Hi
we have been in australia now for 14 weeks in Robina on the Gold coast and are loving every minute of life here.. weather, beaches, shopping, outdoor activities.... and the family from uk have started booking their holidays over for next year..
have a good warm christmas everyone and a happy new year!!!
Merry christmas to you too! Nice that the family are booking their holidays already. Don't know when ours will venture out, but they will one day!
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