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Brits Abroad


Thought I'd start this thread as a few MWers are sprinkled around the world and are originally from the UK.

These few posts from another thread (below) got me thinking - why not share our experiences Very Happy

I love Twinings Earl Grey tea and can buy that here, for an arm and a leg like of course. It's the wine prices that's the killer in Norway, so I envy you in NZ with your lovely Marlborough whites, Twin Islands, Sauv. Blancs etc. Mr. Green
Being an Andy fan I need a steady supply  w00t Not unlike yourself, my dear. hug

HaHa... I've got a few Charles/Di memorabilia too..
We can buy Brit food here, but the mark-up is atrocious.  We have a good local Scottish butcher, so had our haggis on 25th ... do this every year.
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Right, time to write a bit more about me.

Been a MWer since 2005 and moved out to NZ in 2006 - the only year Andy played in Auckland and I missed it by 2 months Rolling Eyes

Live in Cambridge and work in Hamilton.

There's myself and another Brit at the place where I work, so it's nice to share experiences with her.  I'm also lucky enough to be able to have Radio 2 on at work (via internet) and livescores when the tennis is on Very Happy

I do miss things from the UK but there are some things I don't miss.
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^Things not to miss- The weather! Living here under a Tory government (sorry Nigel) Smile
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Great idea to start this thread Bev - it'll be interesting to hear everyone's experiences.   We seriously thought about moving to New Zealand 12 years ago but in the end decided to stay in the good old UK.  Would love to visit New Zealand it seems such a lovely Country.
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Hey Bev...
Hubby & I emigrated from Scotland to Canada 1998.  People always ask us 'why?'.. and I always say there isn't a simple answer to that.. more like a lot of ingredients made up the pot of our decision.
- Looking for better future for our wee boy.
- A better life-style
- Being part of, and contributing toward, a relatively 'new' country
- Better weather (apart from winter!)
- Emigration is part of our family make-up (hubby's aunt & uncle came here late 1950's... and I have family in Australia)
- I survived late stage cancer (boy.. did THAT change my thought process!)

People always say it must have been a hard decision... but it was actually quite easy.  After much research, visits to Canada (together: 1... hubby: 10 before I met him) and family anecdotes.. well, we just decided rather than 'why?' it became 'why not?' We've spoken to so many people who have said they'd thought about it in the past, but didn't do anything and now regret it.
We didn't want to be like that.... no looking back with thoughts of 'what if...?'  They way we saw it, worse case scenario would be that if it didn't work, we would just go back.  But at least we would have tried.
I can't pretend it's been plain sailing.  We've made some major financial sacrifices to come here and get on our feet, but all in all we think it's been worth it.

Things I miss....
- My sisters... (my mother is here.. we sponsored here 10 years ago Smile)
- My friends....
- People knowing what I'm talking about..
- People understanding my accent...
- Boots the chemist, British Home Stores, Marks & Spencers, Woolies
- Christmas Number 1 in the charts (do they still do that and is it still important?)
- The postie delivering letters through my letterbox twice a day, and a Saturday too (mailboxes here, Mon-Fri 1xday)
- First- fittin' (we go to a local Scottish pub to toast to everyone and 'take in the bells' at 7pm our time.. UK midnight time)

As far as food is concerned.. honestly don't miss much.  For a while visitors HAD to bring Aberdeen rowies (a local pastry) and smokey back bacon.. but we don't even like those anymore because out taste-buds and diet has changed (for the better.. much healthier now.)  Althoug hubby just HAS to have his British chocolate.. which he pays through the nose for... but I have to admit is much better than the same product here.  Same brand but different taste.. I think maybe they put less milk in here?

I must say we are so much more 'Scottish' here than we were back in Scotland.  Funny that eh?..
Oh dear... look what you've started BevC....I had better stop... I'm getting all nostalgic.... Said way more than I had intended!
We love Canada and do not regret for a moment making this our home.  We are Canadian citizens and hold both Canadian and UK passports. Believe it or not, there are many Canadians who don't have passports!
Our son is now 'Canadian' but with a Scottish flavour..
As my avator says... I am Scotnadian!
[ Last edit by scotnadian February 01, 2012, 08:38 PM ] IP Logged

Loved reading that scotnadian.  Sounds like it was really hard graft to start with but good that you think it was worth it.   Really sorry to read about the cancer, hope you are whole and hearty now.

Now for the bad news: Woolies is no more - stores were all closed a year or two ago.  Christmas No. 1 in the charts is not like it was and first-fitten is dying out.  Good news: I understand your accent perfectly highfive
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Thanks sengamac... quite cathartic for me!
I am fine, thanks.. just need regular check-ups/scans/boring crap..
Woolies gone!!... nobody told me!!! Not even my sisters!
No more Cliff Richard No.1 at Christmas??  Sad..
First fittin' .. I still don't let anyone into our house unless they knock on the door with a gift.. superstitious!
Glad you understand my accent! hug
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Yes Woolies definitely gone - your sisters were probably protecting you Smile Cliff Richards doesn't get played on the radio anymore but the chocolate is still great cmon yeah     Really pleased you are better  hug
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I too loved reading your summary Scotnadian Very Happy

We moved out to NZ for similar reasons and Canada was our second choice had we failed in our bit to move out here.

We have 3 children and thought that they'd enjoy the laid back lifestyle and have more opportunities - they miss the hussle and bussle of the UK and great public transport but all have part-time jobs and 1 is just about to start their 3rd year at uni next month with another starting.  Both were given grants for choosing the local university, which was dependent on their school results.  My son, who's about to start his 3rd year at uni did want to study back in the UK and was accepted in 2 uni's but only as an international student - people think the fees are high for home students!  As we can now apply for citizenship in NZ (which we will do), we can also live and work in Australia, without the hassle of going through their immigration process.  We might think about moving over there when the kids have finished at uni and Melbourne seems a tempting place.

A few big high street names have gone from the UK Scotnadian, and I'm sure that there may be other casualties.  MFI, Borders, Threshers, Etam and I'm sure Burtons/Principles/Adams has gone too? dontknow
[ Last edit by Bevc February 02, 2012, 09:42 AM ] IP Logged

Really enjoyed reading your "stories" folks. Thank you.
Bevc: a friend of my daughter's has settled in Perth. Daughter has visited and loved it. BTW Friend met partner in bar in Spain, as you do Whistle
Scotnandian, Woolworths in my neck of the woods was taken over by a woman who'd worked there all her life and became "Wellworths." Smile Still operating some two years later.
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Yeah BBH, I've heard from the follow Brit at work that Perth is a really nice place.

Met a gent from just south of Glasgow at work the other day - he works for the new printers we have.  Anyway, he's been out here 7 years, called Grant, has been back a few times but doesn't regret moving out and says a few of his friends back in the UK are finding it hard job wise.

And speaking of things Scottish, noticed that one of my local supermarkets has Irn Bru in for only $2.40 a can.  Makes me smile when I see 49p on the side of the can though Very Happy
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I have a cousin who was born in Australia and lives in Brisbane (he was away on vacation when Andy was playing there)..
He likes Melbourne and Perth.

Bev.. don't you know by now that if you want to buy anything British, you have to automatically pay a ten million percent markup? Wink

Glad your kids are doing well in uni.  Our son is in 2nd year.. but the Uni fees in this province (Ontario) are crazy. Much higher than the rest of Canada.  In fact.. there was a protest in Toronto yesterday by students with this complaint. All in, we are paying 12 thousand dollars/year... thankfully he goes to a local university and can stay at home, otherwise we would have residency fees on top of that!  The government implemented a new policy last month whereby there will be a 30 per cent reduction in Uni fees.. but I think many people are excluded from this.  We are one of the lucky ones, but the fees are still high.
When I talk to my friends in Scotland, the fees there would seem to be much lower.
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Scotnandian, Woolworths in my neck of the woods was taken over by a woman who'd worked there all her life and became "Wellworths." Smile Still operating some two years later.

Smart lady! clap
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$12k sounds a lot for uni dontknow  Our kids are funding themselves (student loan) and it was something we made clear to the kids from the outset.  Whilst we are happy for them to stay at home, we couldn't stretch the budget to uni.  Luckily my daughter has just about paid her 1st year fees with the grant she was awarded.

We are behind here in NZ with programmes that are screened on tv.  Coro is a prime example but then again, it's only on tv twice a week.  We've just got to see part of Downton's Christmas Special and my mum and dad mentioned a new programme with Billy Connolly on Route 66 - that started here last night Very Happy
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Yeah.. $12k is a fortune! The actual fees are over $8k... but then there is the mandatory laptop fee (you can't use your own.. they've got that tied up nice!) which is another $1.6k.. then there are all the mandatory ancillary fees (health centre, transportation, etc..etc..
Don't even start me on books!.. this second semester he requires 6 or 7.. last semester was 4...
Actually, I'm beginning to realise it's probably costing us MORE than $12k.. yikes!
We are able to pay our son's fees because we only have one child.  For sure if we had more, it would be different.
Corrie... we are approx 8 months behind.  Everyone is sworn to secrecy so it's like watching it 'new' for us.
Sorry.. don't know Downton?
Nor Route 66... although we did go to see Billy Connolly live at Capital Theatre Aberdeen before we came here. Funny!
Funnier still Bev is this.. I was thinking about an old Billy Connolly song yesterday when I saw that picture of Andy in wellies with his wee doggies.  What are the chances!!...

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