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About supa

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  1. Just to throw into the mix, I used to work as a chambermaid in a hotel in the country. The hotel owner (an arse and appaling employer) used to walk through the corridors in his hunting pink every weekend in the season. One day I went to my room to hear the cries of fox cubs housed in crates outside my room. Apparently the mother had been killed and the cubs found. They were fed and watered in the crates for a while and then released as "the future generation". After asking around, I found out from mates at other hotels in the area that this was a very common practice. I now don't buy the "keeping the vermin down" argument. I didn't get the impression that they were Tory members (as some were down to earth farmers and their hands), just murdering scum who I grew to hate. Also, packs of hounds aren't fussy what they kill when they are in a frenzy as local pets, birds, deer, hares and badgers found out to their cost.
  2. I can't imagine not cuddling my kids for 2 years. Never mind her struggling with the school issue, what about not being able to chat about it with her dad? Being away 1-2 days per week is one thing, but all the time is quite another.
  3. supa

    We love it here but too expensive to settle!

    Maybe we are just lucky, but we aren't finding the UK to be as bad as the media make out. To hear/read it, you would think we are all living off food banks, none of us have jobs and we are all being repossessed. I still maintain that if you are happy to keep your head down and graft and avoid the doomsdayers, it's actually a pretty fine place to live. I may also be trying to make the most of things though as our PR ran out in January and we didn't move because the exchange rate was so pants (and are now too old to try again!). I often wonder what it would have been like but with hindsight I know we did the right thing. We just couldn't have the life there we do here and we're also able to spend time with our rapidly ageing parents (not always a good thing). Wages are less here, but so is food stuffs for example and houses comparable/cheaper. We've been "across the channel" a couple of times in the last year too, which was lovely. In short, don't worry about coming back to the UK - it's as fine as you want to make it. x
  4. supa

    Cold Feet...

    Hi KM, no we didn't go in the end. We were granted our 175 permanent residency visa (almost) 5 years ago which runs out at the beginning of January 2014 (happy new year to us!!!) and we are now timed out. Unfortunately, the £ just died and we decided that our lives, financially, were better here and would have entailed us giving up far more than we were prepared to. Unlike you though we are cracking on a bit and hubby has now passed the magic 50, so we are now officially too old to go. The kids are now settled into good schools and well, life has just sort of moved on from Oz. Education may well seem a very long way off at the moment with your kids being that bit younger, but it does become a bigger issue as they get older and it definately complicates things as you will probably know and as highlighted in Caramac's post above. We intend having a very long holiday there someday, seeing the places we didn't get to (we had 2 x reccies, so we've seen a bit but not nearly enough). We've also got a dream of retiring there but that is a fair way off, so not worth processing the thought at the moment. Listening to people who are so torn after marrying Ozzies, I'm glad I married a Brummie (never thought I'd say that!). We are sort of sighing whistfully and saying wonder what it would have been like to have gone but we aren't "kicking ourselves" luckily, as we could have just said "hang it all" and gone; we did after all have a choice. We have just booked a holiday and are making the most of the whole "close to Europe" thing which, funnily enough, was a factor in our decision not to go. Really wishing you the best of luck with your decision x
  5. supa

    Cold Feet...

    I agree with the posters above and want to say I'm so sorry for your loss. I know it so, so hard. When we told my 77 and 78 year old parents our plans, my mum dissolved in tears but my dad immediately said go for it. His thinking was that it was a fab opportunity but that at his age, realistically, he wouldn't be around for many years more and he didn't want us to stay just for him. Horrible to say, but your family are your main priority. It may just be cold feet but I do agree though that it may be an idea to delay for a time yet if you really are having doubts. Moving and feeling miserable and trapped would be very, very hard. If you are able to visit your mum a bit, that I would have thought would help a lot; that along with daily Skype/telephone chats It could be that cancelling the move may take the pressure off you and focus your feelings and you decide then that it is actually what you wanted after all. Above all, discuss all of your feelings with your OH. I'm sure he would rather no go than have you unhappy and uncertain. Don't envy you at all and wish you luck.
  6. supa

    That's it - it's over

    Thanks for your responses all - very kind of you. You are right Pablo (as usual, of course!) we do all have our own criteria. Like so many things in life, kids do completely change your take on life; sometimes for the better and vice versa. Probably because the reality of it all finally being over, I've kind of been grieving as it was such a huge part of our lives for so long. We still love Oz and will definitely go back - we don't rule out retiring over there (once kids don't need us any more and our folks have popped their clogs). In retrospect we should have just gone for it in the beginning and not held on for so long - life kind of passed us by. Note to self, make a decision and bloody well stick to it!! I'm certainly not leaving the forum though - too many no-Aus things to look at!
  7. supa

    That's it - it's over

    Just an update. Our 5 year PRV expires at the beginning of January (2014) and OH is now 50, so we've come to the end of the road. Unfortunately, the GFC has claimed another victim. When we started the whole migration lark, the $ was 2.20+, which would have had us nicely set up with a new dream life. We subsequently did a $1.80 redraft of figures and we still haven't been able to make it work. We've put our names down for 2 x schools, who, after taking our $100.00 each have said that they don't have vacancies (nice little earner that!!). I always said I wouldn't move unless OH has a job, that there is a good chance that I would get a casual job, the kids were in a good school, and we could live in a gorgeous house. Materialistic I know, but if we want to move to the other side of the planet, we want to make it worthwhile. However, we've watched the currency crash and this would no longer be achievable. We run our own business, and each project has a run-off of 12-18 months, with the bulk of our fees being paid at the end of each one, so uping and leaving wasn't an option either. We had a little "bugger this, lets up and leave before the end of the year" moment, but this isn't realistic and we would unable to leave Oz for 2 years and the feeling of being trapped fills me with horror. Eldest worked her socks off to get into grammar and youngest is so happy at his current school that the thought of making them leave is also not nice and I don't think they would forgive us! We visited Oz (Melbourne) twice and absolutely loved it, and we were all up for it, but things are different now. So long term, I think that in a few years time, we'll do a long-term road trip around Oz and in the meantime, count our blessings, accept that it wasn't to be and appreciate our lives here. I do have concerns for the UK (not going to be negative or start a war), but I've just got to hope that things come out in the wash. My biggest fear is the kids not being able to get jobs, but I guess they can just venture further afield abroad (and achieve what we didn't). So that's it. Good luck to all the brave souls who just went for it without all the hangups that we've had and have made it work and also to those who tried and it didn't work out - respect. I'm not leaving the forum and enjoy looking in, but we just aren't migrating. XXX
  8. supa

    Life with two dogs and kids in perth

    Have to say that I think it would be better to rehome them, providing that the new owners are experienced with the foibles that rescue dogs can have and don't pass them on again. Having owned a rescue border collie mix for 15 years who had MAJOR behavioural issues, I would say that leaving them would be best all round; you will have enough on your plate with everything else. Unless you have owned a dog with problems, it's not possible to imagine just how draining it can be. We loved our pooch so much but to be honest, there were times when I wish we'd never taken her on! Do what's right for you, your family and the dogs without feeling emotional (if poss).
  9. supa

    static caravans

    I think it's a good idea. We've got one in a holiday park and it's so lovely, mainly because there are facilities and also because most other people on the site are on holiday/relaxing and it is therefore a positive place to be. Yep, the site fees are a killer but it isn't too bad for us as we use it for holidays and most weekends so it's not bad value - depends how often you are going to use it once you have moved out. It's best if you buy one near where you are going to live so that you have a holiday home when you find somewhere more permanent. If you buy a young enough van you'll be able to hire it out through the park but they won't allow older vans to be used - nothing to stop you hiring it out privately to recoup some cash. As has been mentioned, they are freezing in winter; we shut ours down at end of October and ventured back at end of March, but gave up as it was too cold. They are cosy but have lots of ventilation, so keeping them warm is tricky. You can of course sell it eventually, but expect to lose a hefty bit of cash and the park owners to make a good bit of profit. Good luck.
  10. supa

    Homesick after 20 days?!?!?!

    I'm in the UK so can't help - I do feel very sorry for you. It's a brave thing to do to relocate on your own; I could never have done it, so well done to you. I googled on Social meets in Brisbane and came across this. Have a click and see if there's anything to take your fancy. It may not be something you would normally think of, but clearly there are others out there who want to have a bit more of a social life. As I've read so many times on here, no-one will come knocking on your door; you have to go out there and find your life for yourself. It may be that Oz isn't for you, but I think you may regret going home too soon. Having said that, given that you struggled when you were in the States too, it could just be that you are a homebird and that back home with your family is where you should be and that recognising this is what you need for peace of mind. I don't know - only you can decide. Good luck to you. x http://social.meetup.com/cities/au/brisbane/
  11. supa

    London 2012: Olympics

    Ceremony was mind-blowing - absolutely loved it. Only downside, Paul bloody McCartney. Somone stop him please.
  12. supa

    Best community feeling - where to live

    Looks like a cracking place - now I just have to find that in Melbourne!
  13. supa

    Best community feeling - where to live

    Difficult one for us as if we do come over, I would like to move to Mount Martha/Mornington as I loved the places when we have visited. However, it may be that OH would have more chance of a job in Geelong (I'm guessing a commute from say Dromana to Geelong would be out of the question - OH fancies a trip on the ferry every day!). We visited Geelong briefly and it was OK but we didn't get such a good vibe. The problem with Oz is that there are so many different towns, that trying to get one that fits is difficult. I love the beach and would love to live by it, but not at the expense of a friendly environment for all of us.
  14. Even Stephanie Flaaaanders from the BBC news was saying yesterday how dodgy these figures are and for people not to get too hysterical. Bloody hope she's right. I can't work out how one minute Cameron et all are shouting from the rooftops that we really, really, really are knacked on one hand and then inviting foreign countries to come and invest in infrastructure - I wouldn't touch us with a bargepole if I was looking to spread my dosh around.
  15. For me turn-offs have to be unkindness/bad manners and poor hygiene. Easy pleased me.