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The Pom Queen

Positive Emigrating To Australia True Life Stories

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Wow that`s beautiful Petals .......


IELTS: L 9, R 7.5, W 8.0, S 8.5 overall 8.5

Visa lodged June 27th!, CO July 26th

AHPRA sent July 2nd, LOE August 1st

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Guest Guest16631

.........the second time I came to Australia was in 1992....qld...with a OH and 2 children......

........we rented a nice home ,one child at school ,one in preschool...and OH got a job in Adelaide for 6 months...!

.........I didn't drive back then so started lessons in an old ford falcon station wagon......

..........no power steering and had to tap the starter motor then run to turn the ignition.....

..........the mileometrer no longer worked it had stopped at all the 9's many years ago .....

..........according to the man we bought it off.......

...........my eldest was being bullied at school .......and was badley beaten up some older boys....

...........so I took them out of school............put them in the car.......( did finally pass my test by the skin of my teeth..lol)

............and drove off looking for a place to call home.......

............we eventually settled on a very small house in a coastal village........

..............the school was wonderful.........small ,friendly and the boys could bike there......

.............applied for a home loan........and bought it......

...............so when OH was home I packed up the car.....with the boys ,the dogs ,the guinea pigs and the bird.........while OH went on ahead on the moter bike.....

...............and arrived to the biggest bush fire I had ever seen.......!

.................we stopped at the end of the road to learn that the fire was running towards the house.......

.................the rural fire brigade were great........they and OH saving the house......but most of the land and trees were burnt........

..................by evening we moved in but spent the night putting out spot fires..........

...................collecting buckets of water from the dam ............and stamping out the little sparks .......

....................glowing in the night .............

......................this is how we met the neighbours..........as those not affected went round helping those who were................we met some wonderful people that night.........shared some great stories .............

.........................and I got through a fair amount of shoes........stamping out the parks........lol........

 

 

..................my children had a great life there.............swimming in the sea just 10 ministers walk.....

................or on the dam ,which had a rope swing tied in the large gum tree ...................

....................swinging over the water and dropping in.........

.....................they both had a pony and often disappeared for the day with a pack of sandwiches

.......................and a flask of water to the beach or nearby pine forests.......

.....................they bought the ponies from a nearby property..........

.....................one less than a hundred dollars the other a little more.........!

......................one still with us now though she's 28.........

 

 

...................we saw a few floods there............sand bags in the door ways.......

....................furniture lifted up off the floors...........

....................the smell of the mud left behind took ages to get rid of......

.....................but it was a good life.........OH worked away.......but when he was home....

.....................we did so much...............his parents came every year......often staying for a couple of months..........and eventually we built a house for my parents who were already living in aus........

....................but tragecly my father got cancer at 57 and died not long after wards........

.....................my OH lost his job............and I found out I was expecting ........my eldest was 10.......!

.....................so the house was repossessed..........

........................my mother moved away nearer a bigger town and we moved into a rental in the village......

........................and saved...........and saved............and saved...........

..........................till we could afford a piece of land.........not the greatest.......

.........................and built a spec home..........

...........................we worked hard...........adding a garden ,a pool......and slowly a home we could sell........

............................and bought here............just over 8 years ago.......

............................a little run down..............and over grown........

..............................a project...............still ongoing........

 

 

.......................that's just skimming the surface tbh...........

......................it's been a wonderful journey in the main..........

.......................a few downs but so many ups.......

.........................my children are happy..........two in their own homes with good careers.....

........................the youngest well on his way.......

 

 

........................I have so many tales of life here..........

..........................the runaway goats.........the cow and the council men....!

....................more bush fires floods.........travels from one state through another to another.....!

....................the characters ,the scenery .........from the blue of the ocean........to the red of the country soil.........

.....................but any one coming to Australia can have an adventure........

.....................in its vast and diverse life it offers..................tink x

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.........the second time I came to Australia was in 1992....qld...with a OH and 2 children......

........we rented a nice home ,one child at school ,one in preschool...and OH got a job in Adelaide for 6 months...!

.........I didn't drive back then so started lessons in an old ford falcon station wagon......

..........no power steering and had to tap the starter motor then run to turn the ignition.....

..........the mileometrer no longer worked it had stopped at all the 9's many years ago .....

..........according to the man we bought it off.......

...........my eldest was being bullied at school .......and was badley beaten up some older boys....

...........so I took them out of school............put them in the car.......( did finally pass my test by the skin of my teeth..lol)

............and drove off looking for a place to call home.......

............we eventually settled on a very small house in a coastal village........

..............the school was wonderful.........small ,friendly and the boys could bike there......

.............applied for a home loan........and bought it......

...............so when OH was home I packed up the car.....with the boys ,the dogs ,the guinea pigs and the bird.........while OH went on ahead on the moter bike.....

...............and arrived to the biggest bush fire I had ever seen.......!

.................we stopped at the end of the road to learn that the fire was running towards the house.......

.................the rural fire brigade were great........they and OH saving the house......but most of the land and trees were burnt........

..................by evening we moved in but spent the night putting out spot fires..........

...................collecting buckets of water from the dam ............and stamping out the little sparks .......

....................glowing in the night .............

......................this is how we met the neighbours..........as those not affected went round helping those who were................we met some wonderful people that night.........shared some great stories .............

.........................and I got through a fair amount of shoes........stamping out the parks........lol........

 

 

..................my children had a great life there.............swimming in the sea just 10 ministers walk.....

................or on the dam ,which had a rope swing tied in the large gum tree ...................

....................swinging over the water and dropping in.........

.....................they both had a pony and often disappeared for the day with a pack of sandwiches

.......................and a flask of water to the beach or nearby pine forests.......

.....................they bought the ponies from a nearby property..........

.....................one less than a hundred dollars the other a little more.........!

......................one still with us now though she's 28.........

 

 

...................we saw a few floods there............sand bags in the door ways.......

....................furniture lifted up off the floors...........

....................the smell of the mud left behind took ages to get rid of......

.....................but it was a good life.........OH worked away.......but when he was home....

.....................we did so much...............his parents came every year......often staying for a couple of months..........and eventually we built a house for my parents who were already living in aus........

....................but tragecly my father got cancer at 57 and died not long after wards........

.....................my OH lost his job............and I found out I was expecting ........my eldest was 10.......!

.....................so the house was repossessed..........

........................my mother moved away nearer a bigger town and we moved into a rental in the village......

........................and saved...........and saved............and saved...........

..........................till we could afford a piece of land.........not the greatest.......

.........................and built a spec home..........

...........................we worked hard...........adding a garden ,a pool......and slowly a home we could sell........

............................and bought here............just over 8 years ago.......

............................a little run down..............and over grown........

..............................a project...............still ongoing........

 

 

.......................that's just skimming the surface tbh...........

......................it's been a wonderful journey in the main..........

.......................a few downs but so many ups.......

.........................my children are happy..........two in their own homes with good careers.....

........................the youngest well on his way.......

 

 

........................I have so many tales of life here..........

..........................the runaway goats.........the cow and the council men....!

....................more bush fires floods.........travels from one state through another to another.....!

....................the characters ,the scenery .........from the blue of the ocean........to the red of the country soil.........

.....................but any one coming to Australia can have an adventure........

.....................in its vast and diverse life it offers..................tink x

 

Wow, thought I had had some adventures but it sounds as though your life hasn't been dull.

lovely stories on this thread, not sure I am allowed to join in as I haven't officially emigrated as on a temporary retirement visa, but have been here 10 years now and love it.

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Wow, thought I had had some adventures but it sounds as though your life hasn't been dull.

lovely stories on this thread, not sure I am allowed to join in as I haven't officially emigrated as on a temporary retirement visa, but have been here 10 years now and love it.

Of course you can join in, would love to know your story. :hug:


If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.

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Kate - where is the second part of your story??? Dying to hear it!

Lol I will get there just haven't had time to breathe with my strict exercise workout pmsl I only last 30 minutes in the pool then I need hubby to winch me out because my leg muscles are rubbish


If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.

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Guest littlesarah

I decided to visit Australia after a holiday in South America made me realise that I had quite itchy feet! So, I worked out a savings plan that would enable me to go on a WHV and have enough spare cash to make renting my house out a safe and feasible option. By coincidence, I met a really great guy about 3 months after I'd started my planning and saving, who just so happened to be Australian, and who was planning to return home in few months. At least I'd know one person in the whole country!!

 

As it turned out, he didn't return to Australia for another 18 months, with me. We had a great year travelling, doing a bit of work (if 12 weeks each counts!), and I decided that I loved the place so much I wanted to return for good. On the way home, His Lordship proposed, and I thought it would be rude to say no seeing as he'd followed me halfway round the world and back! I had a secret desire to live in one particular suburb, though I didn't dare tell anyone (even HRH), for fear of a: looking a bit mental and b: it not happening and him thinking I'd be forever unhappy.

 

So, we returned to Blighty, and started to plan our wedding. The plan was for me to apply for a 175 visa once we'd got married, but life kind of got in the way of that when my sister lost her son at 38 weeks' gestation 3 months before the wedding. So, we hung around a while longer, I got a better job and more experience, and in 2009 we finally got on the plane and made it out here.

 

I love living here - I can't even tell you exactly what it is I like so much, but this is my home. I had a few jobs leads lined up before I arrived, and managed to get a fixed-term job at a local university (thanks to a tip-off from a recruitment agent, who probably went against what her boss would have wanted her to do!) within 12 days of arriving. That eventually turned into a permanent post and the condition that I complete a PhD. So now I'm up to my eyes in work and study! But it's so good to be learning and thinking. We lived with my in-laws for 3 months before buying a house that we'd both fallen in love with - it's renovation project (turns out it's quite a BIG reno!), but I love the location (right in that suburb I'd dreamed of for 7 years!). We're hoping that, in a few months time, we'll have a baby to raise in our home, in the place we love.

 

For me, the hardest times have been when we miss our family in the UK (OH's sister still lives there with her family), especially when we lost our baby early this year. But I think the fact I've visited 3 times in 4 years has helped my parents to see that I haven't just run away and forgotten them; and I'm hoping that they just might visit us next year (a new grandchild would certainly be an incentive, I think!). Trying to juggle work, study and house renovations is also a challenge, but we've done most of the big jobs, and OH is hopeful that some more will be completed before the pitter-patter of tiny feet; but after the way this year started, I don't really care what state the house is in as long the roof is watertight and we all have somewhere to sleep and food to eat.

 

All in all, I'd say that we've been lucky, but also the research and groundwork I put in to ensure that I'd be able to get working ASAP really did help. Our expectations were never all that high, and we realised from before we came here that the exchange rate and our preferred location to live weren't going to enable us to have limitless disposable income; but all I ever wanted was to live here with my husband, and preferably raise a small family. Some days I can't believe this is really my life!

Edited by littlesarah

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I had no thoughts of moving to Australia at any point in my life, but in January 2009 I watched the Wanted Down Under series and said to my OH one day that I thought we should apply for a visa to Australia. We started the process in February and got visa after a trouble free process in December 2009. By this time I had done a lot more research and I never had rosé tinted spectacles, in fact I always read the MBTTUK stuff and was very aware that it might not work out for us.

 

We validated our visas within a few months and whilst on that trip we both got job offers so we made it a permanent move (after a quick trip back to pack up). So starting with work, we know we were lucky to get jobs straight away and we both fitted in at our respective work places immediately. Over three years on and we are still with the same employers and in good roles, better than the ones we started on and indeed my role was a step up in the first place too. I am very happy at work, enjoy what I do and have a great bunch of colleagues. What is no different though, is my "work life " balance and that is because I have not changed it...

 

Unlike others before us but like many after us, we did not have the advantage of a great exchange rate to help us get set up. So we left the house in the UK rented and rent here. I think you have to make the most of a situation so we decided to rent and send money back to UK to pay off the mortgage there and that is what we have done over the last three years. It means we are still renting here and we expect to for another 18 months at least, however we are renting the same house that we move into within a month of arriving, we have no issues with landlord /estate agent and we love the house which is near the beach and we are able to get to work in 45 minutes as well. We look at rent as a cost of living like any other and will enjoy the house whilst we can.

 

A big attraction for us about the move was the opportunity to live and work in another part of the world and explore, we both have the travel bug. We are doing that slowly, visiting different parts of Australia and have also started to explore the South Pacific islands as well. But still have loads to do which is great.

 

On a day to day basis, we feel content and happy. I have a bug bear about the rain here when I see people say that they want to get away from rain, but on the other hand I see far more blue sky here now than I ever did in the past and it just makes everything seem brighter and happier. I do not know what the future holds, will we stay forever, I cannot say. As it is just the two of us we probably have the advantage of being more flexible than people can be once children get involved, however we are starting to think we will see out our working years here and possibly split our time in retirement (which is 20 years away).

 

All in all, no regrets here.

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We have been here nearly 40 years now and can honestly say we never regretted it for a moment. We have 4 children , 2 born in the UK who came with us as little babies. and now we have 8 grand children and 1 great grandson which makes us feel quite ancient( our children had babies pretty young by today's standards).Britain is a foreign country to us now, we no longer feel 'at home' there even though my husband has a brother up in the Lake District. What I learned early in the piece is to get out there and join things and meet people which is very easy when you have young children. I worked for many years in welfare /teaching roles and of course you make friends at work, too. Now I am retired and I find there is so much to do I don't know how I ever found time to work. There is Probus, Red Hats, U3A, volunteer work for the police, my church and a 'dine out' group we go out with monthly as well as personal friends and travelling around to different countries. I love Melbourne because it is so diverse. Having been brought up in London I do not crave the big city life- I've lived it and it is not me. I like fresh air, greenery and a good view out of the window which I get here. I certainly don't want to look at some bloke in a house opposite- it is lovely that from our particular house you cannot see any others even though we are actually on a suburban quarter acre block. I think it is harder for people to emigrate now because of the costs and the fact that it is easier to give up and return. We came on a one-way ticket and returning was totally out of the question- in fact it was 10 years before we set foot on British soil again. People didn't have as much 'stuff' in those days, the living was simple and easy and you could live on one wage with maybe the odd supplement from part -time work. As our kids grew up that changed and at one time both of us were working several jobs which was hard. But then we had chosen private schools for the kids so it was our own fault in a way ( worth it in the long run). I would still say for any potential migrants- go for it, the spirit of adventure still lives and good for you for living your life and seeking the best for yourself and family!

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Ok here is part 2.

In Melbourne we lived in a suburb called Lyndhurst it was central to everything, 10 minutes to the beach, 10 minutes to Fountain Gate, 20 min to the Dandenong Ranges, getting in to the city out of rush hour was around 40 minutes in rush hour it could be 2 hours plus. Work was great with me and I got to choose my own hours so I usually set off around 4am-4.30 and covered ICU and would finish at 3pm even then though the traffic would be queuing up past the tunnel on the Monash so it would take 2 hours to get home (don't know if its any better these days) I did this for a number of years and then started to struggle health wise so decided to work for myself. I started Moving to Melbourne and it grew and grew in fact it got too much for just little ole me.

Anyway the kids were loving school, they had lots of friends. we decided to plan our next holiday we never had any intentions of going overseas as there was and still is a lifetimes worth of things to see and do here. We had previously flown to Alice and drove to Darwin but this time I wanted to explore further afield. So we booked a Britz Camper to pick up in Alice and drop off in Brissy. So in June we set off on our 5 week adventure loved every second of it. Seeing parts of Aus not many others have (even the Aussies) from Darwin we headed across to Cairns. Unfortunately Rob had ended up with diesel in his eye so he had wanted to miss Cairns and head straight to Townsville, thank goodness we didn't, although driving down Gillies in a camper van wasn't great fun. Every single cupboard and drawer must have opened we had tins of beans rolling around, a flood of milk when it fell from the fridge and the eldest nearly got knocked out when a can of soup landed on his head. All I can remember is Rob cursing. First stop when we reached Cairns was the Dr to get his eye checked, but the scenery driving through had me in awe, the rolling hills, the blue skies and the parrots flying past.

We spent a week here and then headed South. By the time we got back to Melbourne we had already decided Cairns was for us. I was worried about moving the boys again but all of them wanted the move. So the house went on the market in July. In August we hired the services of a buyers advocate Cairns Asset Realestate Sharon was an angel we saw property on the Internet and then myself and my eldest flew up to Cairns to view our short list (not that short we viewed 20 properties) in the end it was one up in the hills or one on the beach, the one in the hills had the best views so we put in our offer ($100k below asking price) and after a lot of correspondence they agreed. One thing I didn't like about Cairns compared to Melbourne is that there are not many McMansion style houses. If I could have brought my Melbourne house and put it on our land it would have been perfect, although it wouldn't last long with the cyclones. The houses up here are built to Cat 4 strength, most only have one living area, ours in Melbourne had 4 lounge areas. This one has two.

Anyway the few months before we were due to make the move I ended up in hospital for a few weeks. So poor Rob had to pack the house up himself. I came out of hospital two days before we flew. Myself, my eldest and youngest came up and let Rob and the middle son stay behind to finish off with the help of some lovely friends who we met on here.

We used Crown to ship our belongings up here as we didn't want to start from scratch again (all I'm going to say is Crown were not great) we shipped the car on a back loader and the dog flew with Rob.

We were told by numerous people and read on here that the weather would be terrible as it was wet season and really humid. Well everyday was blue skies and the rains came at night so didn't bother us. Roll on a few months and a weather forum I'm on started mentioning a cyclone heading to Cairns, Rob just laughed and didn't believe me, I kept telling him we needed to stock up on rations, buy a generator etc and I kept being met with a snigger. Anyway a week before Yasi hit he started believing me, buy then it was too late everyone was panic buying, the shelves were empty, no toilet roll, nothing. We got what we could and headed home. Anyway the day before Yasi hit we had to bring all the furniture inside tape up the windows etc. We saw the neighbour, he had brought his boat up from the marina as it was in the evacuation area he put it on the spare piece of land but then another neighbour complained that it would blow straight threw his roof. So he drove off with it trying to find a more secure area. All the neighbours were leaving and we were like oh sh1te where do we go. There were no flights out available, going in land was an option but then obviously Yasi would follow. Yasi was now a Cat 5 and heading for a direct impact on Cairns, the Northern Beaches were all evacuated it was said this would be the worst and most damaging cyclone to hit Australia. Waves as high as 12m (nearly 40ft) were going to hit the coast combined with a high tide of up to 7metres (30ft) residents feared their homes would be washed away, the city shops started sand bagging the hospital was evacuated and critical patients flown to Brissy (who builds a hospital so close to shore).

Anyway that night we had taken our kitchen table downstairs with all the mattresses etc and the kids slept under there. Wind speeds were 284km/h in gusts and sustained wind speeds of 218km/h

Cairns got off lightly but boy that was one hell of a scary night, there were a number of PIO members who chatted with me on FB whilst I was in tears. It was pointless us heading to the Cyclone shelter as the one in Redlynch is only up to Cat 4 standard, the same as our house and this was a Cat 5 system.

The most terrifying thing was the howling of the wind it was like someone had started a jet engine in the garden.

Anyway we came through pretty much unscathed, we lost a few trees but thankfully they missed the house.

It took over a week for us to get power back, wow it was hot, we spent most days driving around in the car to charge mobiles, and have the air con on.

 

So yes we had a great welcome to Cairns, but, it would never deter me. It is the most beautiful place I have been to in the world, every day as I'm driving back home I say wow this is wonderful.

After seeing the flooding after Yasi I see areas that I know are in the danger zone, ok it may not happen again for a few years but I would not take the risk and am thankful we chose the hills over the beaches.

I will add some photos later as I don't have them on my iPad.

 

So, in total what do we all feel about our life over here.

Eldest - 20yrs old - Loves it and would never move back to the UK has no interest in the place even though some of his mates have taken a gap year to tour Europe. He is currently studying Psychology at uni and working.

 

Middle Child - He is like me has itchy feet, so I think eventually he will travel although he says he will never go back to the UK as this is home. He wants to be a chef.

 

Youngest Child - Loves life here never wants to leave Cairns or go back to the UK, is going to be a geologist and loves the outback and fossicking.

 

Rob - Umm tough one, I have been really ill over the last 4 years this year has been the worst and I think Rob has realised he doesn't have the support network here. I spent just over 3 months in hospitals and all of them struggled so I think deep down he wants to go back and I think if anything happened to me he will go back, but I think the eldest two would want to stay, the youngest would have no choice. Does he love Cairns, well I'm speaking for him but his answer is yes, he loves it until Jan, Feb, March then he hates the place because of the humidity.

 

Me - I keep saying it but Cairns is paradise, I would happily die here (although we have looked at the grave yard and its not in a great area lol, I wish they had a graveyard like Eden in NSW ) The hospitals are not great and that is the only downside but all I can ever say about Cairns is WOW, WOW, WOW

We aren't posh, we don't have a lot in fact we don't have any savings at the minute but what we do have we appreciate.

 

Since we have been here the price of everything has jumped (I'm sure it has in the UK as well) but I love it here and have never looked back, never even been back to Blighty.

 

I get angry when someone says they hate Australia and they haven't ventured through the rest of what this huge country as to offer. You wouldn't go to Bradford and judge all of Europe on that one town, yet that's what some do.

 

 

Some photos

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If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.

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Beautiful pictures Pom Queen, your dog is lovely! x


IELTS 19/01/13. ANMAC skills assessment received 03/04/13, positive skills assessment 02/07/13. EOI 09/07/13, invitation to apply 14/07/13, 189 Visa applied for 18/07/13. Medicals 02/08/13, PCC uploaded 14/08/13. Visa grant 12/09/13 (Brisbane Team 33)! AHPRA documents received 08/08/13, LOE 16/09/13. Arrived in Adelaide 26/02/2014, moved to WA December 2014.  Applied for citizenship March 2018, still waiting.

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Beautiful pictures Pom Queen, your dog is lovely! x

The table was our cyclone shelter but the dog headed there first and once the kids got under Rob and I were left sat on the sofa praying the house didn't fly away lol.


If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.

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I think I remember talking to you when that cyclone hit Kate, scary stuff. I'm sooo coming back to your house btw... I want a house like that lol

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I think I remember talking to you when that cyclone hit Kate, scary stuff. I'm sooo coming back to your house btw... I want a house like that lol

Hey is that the photo I took of you on Ellis Beach (your avatar)


If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.

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Of course! I wish i had seen more of Cairns :( still we WILL be back so i've told Paul we're going back to take you and your family out for a meal and to do more exploring!

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that actually brought tears to my eyes x


IELTS 28/4/13- S9, R8.0, L8.0, W7, overall 8. ANMAC - Submitted 04/06/13. LOD email confirmation 15/10/13. applied for SA sponsorship 489 05/03/2014 approved 31/03/2014. EOI INVITE- 31/03/2014 APPLIED FOR VISA 12/05/14 - GRANT ?.Aphra lod 04/07/14 CO Allocated 4/8/14 PCC 12/8/14.Medical 13/8/14.Grant awaiting.

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I am addicted to this thread, I get upset when I have read everything!

 

Amazing stories! Pom Queen I loooooovvvvveeee your house, can I please buy it lol? I love Cairns more than anywhere however, I am worried about getting work up there so we are aiming for Brisbane/GC/SC and hope to have lots of holidays in Cairns! :-)


 

IELTS L9.0 R9.0 W8.0 S8.0 AHPRA 13.2.15 ANMAC LOD 31.3.15 Interview QLD Health Job offer & relocation package 30.3.15 189 PR applied 15.4.15 (medicals 7.5.15) CO contact 03.06.15 Visa Grant 06.07.15

Heading to Townsville 16.9.15

 

 

 

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Ok I have been asked to start a thread by a couple of members now. This thread is for members who have moved to Australia and love it here, it's the stories of their ups and downs and successes and how living in Australia has improved their lifestyle etc.

 

Warning - Any negative comments on this thread will be deleted, if we miss one just hit the report button.

I'm coming back to the forum, about time!!!!!:biggrin::biggrin:

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Me, OH and DD age 6 moved to Queensland last June 2012. We stayed at a holiday let in Noosavilee for 5 weeks whilst OH (EC&I Engineer) looked for work :err: I have to say it was very daunting on arrival having never been to Australia before. We were jet lagged and scared half to death lol. Looking for work was tricky at first, getting to know what and how to search, tweak CV abit more but hey presto after 5 weeks OH got offered a fantastic job in Central Queensland! Perfect location for us as we're not and never intended to be city dwellers. I have to say he's on a great salary and never had it so good. The amazing climate here suits us, we're always out and about, taken up camping, Kayaking, going to the beach! Apart from the odd grizzle and at times it's still hard and still getting used to the culture, these things really do take time and patience but thanks to the glorious weather and super lovely locals in our area we have made a really go start. We certainly live a good life now, doing wayyyyy more than we would of or could have afforded back in the UK. My Daughter has a truly amazing state school and is very happy there. We still take things slowly and a month at a time but for now we are as happy as we can be....and long may it continue.......

 

Im not one for writing much but hope this all make sense :wubclub:

It makes perfect sense to me. Your post covers everything from first arrival, being naturally terrified, geography, strange wildlife noises lol, thinking someone has let out a parrot until the kids tell you they are wild here, to adjusting to a total lack of customer service because hey they have had it so good they don't (give a ferk) need to try i.e. realising it's not the UK. And just look at the UK for all our knocking our pans in lol!!!!

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Roll on a few months and a weather forum I'm on started mentioning a cyclone heading to Cairns, Rob just laughed and didn't believe me, I kept telling him we needed to stock up on rations, buy a generator etc and I kept being met with a snigger. Anyway a week before Yasi hit he started believing me, buy then it was too late everyone was panic buying, the shelves were empty, no toilet roll, nothing. We got what we could and headed home. Anyway the day before Yasi hit we had to bring all the furniture inside tape up the windows etc.

Kate....you've only been here since just before Yasi........for some reason I thought you'd been in Cairns for much longer. Worst one for rain and flooding since I've been in Cairns is TC Steve......it didn't miss us.


Never argue with an idiot........he will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.

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Ok I'm going to cheat and do mine in two parts and I'm also going to pinch the text from one I prepared earlier :wink:

 

Our names are Robert and Kate, after considering the move to Australia for approximately 8 years on and off, in 2004 our dream came true and we received our permanent residency.

 

Kate had never visited Australia before and Robert had only visited 10 years earlier for a 6 week holiday. We had so many questions about everything, where do we live? Do we bring our furniture? How do we get a bank account? How can we get a rental? What are the schools like? Do we bring our elderly cat? Where do we go once we get off the plane? How much is the cost of living? Believe me the list was endless. It was a very stressful time especially for our young children who needed us to be strong for them. We didn’t know anyone in Australia and arrived with just 5 suitcases with all our worldly goods which was not bad for the last 30 years of our lives.

 

 

When we arrived we went in to a short term rental which proved a life saver, we had contacted estate agents around Melbourne from the UK and none were willing to consider us as a tenant until we were in the country. We were also advised that for each property that came up for rent there would be a minimum of 7 applications and because we had no Australian references we would be at the bottom of the list. So with this in mind we booked in to a short term rental for 5 weeks the cost was $1500 a week but I would have paid double this for the peace of mind it provided us. We even had the option of renting a car from them which cost $500 for the full stay this was great.

 

 

The first week our body clocks were totally thrown out we were waking up at lunch time but then we were wide awake until about 5am so this first week we didn’t accomplish much. We had access to the internet which was wonderful as it meant we could search for properties without driving around aimlessly. We had no idea where we wanted to live but knew that most expats fell in love with Berwick and the Mornington Peninsula, so we based our search around these areas. We had no luck at all finding properties to rent in Berwick as they were snapped up immediately, we focussed on the areas around Cranbourne (a new upcoming area), Narre Warren (home of the Fountain Gate Shopping Centre) and the surrounding suburbs we applied for a couple of rentals and got knocked back so we applied for around 10 rentals which was rather daunting as we were worried we would end up getting them all, unfortunately we didn’t get any of these. We were not going to let us stop this in our search and eventually we were lucky as one of the agents was an expat and felt sorry for us, she didn’t care about us having references, we had offered 6 months in advance but were informed agents cannot accept this. Anyway we got our first rental property in Australia yippee and it only took us 3 weeks.

 

 

The next thing was to purchase a car, we still had to wait for most of our money to come through from the UK so we purchased a small run around for $10k. That was easy and we could collect the car in 3 days.

 

 

We had been using our UK Drivers License since arriving but we needed an Australian one to help us put everything else in place i.e. banks, tax file number, Medicare. So off we went to change this over which was great as we didn’t need to sit a test.

 

 

We then needed to purchase furniture for our rental. In Australia 98% of rentals are unfurnished. Wow it was so strange starting buying things for your house again things like coat hangers that most of us have way to many of we had to go out and purchase, cutlery, plates etc. A lot of people asked why we didn’t ship our furniture but I think we decided on the best option, it takes around 12 weeks for your furniture to arrive and it would have meant buying or renting furniture, washing machine, fridge freezer until ours arrived so it really wouldn’t have been cost effective.

 

 

So with a rental and a car we now had to consider getting our life back to normal and organise schools and work, before this though we opted to drive up to the Gold Coast and have a 5 week holiday.

 

 

On our arrival back to Melbourne we got the children in to school and Kate started volunteering at a wildlife park where she soon gained employment as a Wildlife Ranger. She then moved on to work alongside 40 vets at the largest animal hospital in the Southern Hemisphere and has been employed with them ever since. Kate continues her studying in both the Veterinary world and animal psychology, behaviour and training.

 

Did we like Melbourne, well lets say it was totally different to what I expected, I thought it would be more baron, red sand everywhere and great weather and surf. Well when I got off the plane it was freezing and raining and looked just like Manchester lol.

I still loved it but it didn't really feel any different to the UK until I started working with the wildlife and then wow, I loved it and never looked back.

 

Property wise, in the UK we first started off in a 2 up, 2 down we then purchased a kennel/cattery on half an acre and were lucky to sell this to a developer to build a couple of houses. Unfortunately back then on the 136 we didn't have enough points and were 5 short, the only way to gain these extra points was to sell our house first as we needed to put a $100,000 in government bonds for a period of 12 months. This was the most scary time of my life, we had to sell the house not knowing if our visa would be granted and if it wasn't I didn't want to leave this house, it was very hard and I was very emotional and kept changing my mind and thinking "are we doing the right thing" "do I really want to go to Australia" etc, I even backed out of the house sale at one point which worked in our favour as the developer was trying to knock us down further, so when I screamed at him forget it I'm not selling he went white as a sheet.

Anyway we did sell, we moved in to a rental and 8 months later we were granted our visa. Our agent at the time was excellent but I've changed my mind on him since hearing lots of horror stories.

 

I am currently out so don't have photos of our first house together but it was a terrace a little like this

[ATTACH=CONFIG]20517[/ATTACH]

 

and the other was our house in Melbourne

brilliant, I think the picture smashed it. Well done lilxxx

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Kate your update/story is so great. Thanks for sharing it, I really enjoyed reading it, I feel like we know you even though we've never met. I really want to see Cairns, your house ( surroundings) look like my idea of paradise.

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Kate....you've only been here since just before Yasi........for some reason I thought you'd been in Cairns for much longer. Worst one for rain and flooding since I've been in Cairns is TC Steve......it didn't miss us.

No unfortunately we suffered in Melbourne all that time lol.

Is it Steve that caused the 40ft floods in Mareeba?


If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.

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I am addicted to this thread, I get upset when I have read everything!

 

Amazing stories! Pom Queen I loooooovvvvveeee your house, can I please buy it lol? I love Cairns more than anywhere however, I am worried about getting work up there so we are aiming for Brisbane/GC/SC and hope to have lots of holidays in Cairns! :-)

That's the only problem, mind you some people seem to walk in to jobs no problem at all so it really does depend what you did. Its a great idea though live in Brisbane and holiday in Cairns, best of both worlds. If you do come on holiday though come at this time of year, its around 29 degrees, blue sky and no humidity


If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.

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Kate your update/story is so great. Thanks for sharing it, I really enjoyed reading it, I feel like we know you even though we've never met. I really want to see Cairns, your house ( surroundings) look like my idea of paradise.

Lol my spelling and grammar isn't I was rushing whilst waiting to pick the boys up from school, I went back to correct everything and thought sod that I will be there all day.


If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.

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No unfortunately we suffered in Melbourne all that time lol.

Is it Steve that caused the 40ft floods in Mareeba?

 

I think so Kate...Steve was only a Cat 2 but it dropped an enormous amount of rain. I was living at Yorkeys (before my Port Douglas move...now back at Yorkeys of course) at the time and we were cut off with floodwater for if I remember rightly for 4 days and with no power.The Boat Club had a generator so consequently had cold beer and a limited menu so was very popular for this period of time. Steve was a wide ranging Cyclone as the maps in the links will show.

http://www.bom.gov.au/cyclone/history/steve.shtml

http://forum.weatherzone.com.au/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=838767


Never argue with an idiot........he will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.

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