Home: it’s where the heart is right? So it has to be Australia. My family, friends, childhood memories, the big open spaces and the beaches. But after 3.5 years in London, it is also my home. New friends and a comfort zone I happily don’t often get to be in because of the challenges life in London brings, endless choice for things to do and monthly (or more) overseas adventures. London is MUCH closer to the rest of the world than Australia and my mind is free and open here!
Soon we move back to Oz and I’m torn between these very things. When I’m asked if I’m looking forward to the move, I find myself answering with a hesitant ‘yeahhh’? But, of course I’m looking forward to it! I just don’t want to let go of London. Here’s why…
What I’ll miss about London:
- Friends – having lived in London twice now, I’ve made some life-long friends that I know I will see again either in Australia, the UK or maybe even an overseas adventure somewhere. But for now, I’m going to miss them!
- Holidays – because they’re frequent, cheap and there’s lot to choose from. For example in the UK, it seems quite common to have 25 days holiday per year in your job. In Australia it’s generally 20 days. We therefore happily have more holidays and sometimes even use zero annual leave days for holidays like to Bremen in Germany where accommodation and flights are costing us £100 each and we’re travelling there and back on the weekend!
- Things to do – London has just about anything you can think of to do. And there’s something on or open every day and night of the week if you feel like a spontaneous social outing. Yesterday we went to a hip hop brunch that went from midday until 5pm!
- Convenient public transport – especially the tube. We have a love / hate relationship but that’s mostly because I prefer to have a personal space bubble which is popped every peak hour journey I’m forced to take. Plus there’s now a 24 hour service on weekends for a cheap trip home!
- Walking everywhere – before moving to London I would not have expected to walk as much as we do. For example I walk to work in 25 minutes. And when we explore London on the weekends, we walk everywhere unless it’s going to take more than 30 minutes and then we look into public transport options. I can only imagine how fat and lazy I’m going to get in Australia where unless you live in Melbourne, you 100% need a car
- Acceptance of different cultures and religions: London is so diverse and people seem to be more accepted here regardless of religion or race. Even the mayor is a Muslim! People come to London from all over the world to achieve something in one of the biggest cities in the world and to be part of it is a beautiful thing
What I’m looking forward to in Australia:
- Quality time with family and friends – it’s going to be a nice feeling seeing family and friends without being faced with leaving them soon after. I’ve missed a lot of birthdays, weddings and meeting my friends’ kids.
- Our own place – rent is expensive in London and we’ve not been able to afford our own place AND travel. So after share-housing at 3 different places with 8 different people, I am done! Cannot wait to have our own space again and with the size of Australian houses and backyards compared to London it’s going to feel like a mansion!
- Daily doggy greeting – in London we had the opportunity to love Ned the cockapoo thanks to BorrowMyDoggy and we are going to miss him so dearly! Getting our own place in Australia means getting our own dog to squeeze and greet us on a daily basis. Let’s be honest, I’ll probably put together a convincing argument to get a cat too
- Marrying my best friend – we’ve survived life in London which means we can survive anything. We recently got engaged at the Minack Theatre in Cornwall so in our first 12 months back in Australia we plan on getting married!
- Beaches – the beaches in the UK and Europe have got nothing on Australian beaches. Especially Queensland and the beaches along the Great Ocean Road in Victoria. Partnered with a REAL warmth from the sun it’s a winning combination I’ll be enjoying as long as I can before the prospect of employment
- Fresh everything – sadly London currently has high air pollution levels. Also, a lot of the fruit in London is imported from not only neighbouring countries but distant countries. Looking forward to fresh, locally grown fruit in Australia NOT covered in plastic!
There are of course more things I could add to both lists but for me they’re the ones that stand out at this very moment. Guess I’d better get back to enjoying London before it’s time to go!