And so the next chapter begins

Trip Start Jan 01, 2012
1
15
Trip End Aug 15, 2014


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Flag of United Kingdom  , England,
Sunday, January 1, 2012

Hey,

It seems like only yesterday that the world was preparing for Y2K yet suddenly I find myself in 2012 a whole 12 years later. Likewise looking back I still find it hard to believe that it was 5 years ago I moved to the UK. How can it be that the years fly by and yet the days drag on?

I start this year living in a 7 bedroom, 4 bathroom house share in Golders Green, a small Jewish community in north London. If you had of told me five years ago I would end up living with this many people I wouldn't have believed you but despite the number of people our house is still a home and not a hostel.

The community where I live is so different from my life back home and even from the English culture that I have to remind myself I’m still in London sometimes. The men roam the streets in their long robes, big hats and long curls. The women are covered from neck down and the married ones all wear wigs. Everybody takes to the streets on Fridays as they aren’t permitted to drive, and the advertising in shop windows and conversations overheard in stores aren’t in English. I have learnt so much already about the Jewish culture from moving in. And I have to say it’s nice to again be in a place where neighbours greet each other and where there is a strong sense of community spirit.

I’m not sure what the future holds for me but I have been starting to think about what’s next. I have loved my time away but considering this was meant to be a one year adventure I feel the pull of home calling me. I have lived the city life and appreciated the opportunities London has given me that I could never have had back in New Zealand but in saying this I am also starting to appreciate the opportunities and unique lifestyle that NZ has that the rest of the world can’t compete with.

Having been here for so long the thought of going back is a bit scary, a lot of my friends back home have moved on and live in different cities so in some ways it’s a little bit like starting from scratch again. I hear stories of how tough the job market is now and expensive the cost of living is yet still despite this I still hear it calling.

 I think I am starting to feel my age, I am no longer a spring chicken, I have grey hairs and feel it after a night out. I yearn to travel but the difference between me now and when I first moved here is that instead of it being adventure I crave its now stability.

I love my current home and live with an amazing bunch of people but I never thought at my age I l would still be in a flat share. I dream of having my own villa-a place to call my own. In my dreams it has hardwood flooring, with chunky rugs and wooden furniture.  The kitchen is home to a gorgeous chilli red Smeg fridge and my beloved matching chilli red Kenwood patissiere mixer. Outside it has wild rambling overgrown gardens and on the deck is a couch and brick barbeque. And to top it all off my dream home comes complete with a purple picket fence.

I feel that I am now ready to go back but at the same time I’m not quite done with Europe yet. I know that with the economic climate once I go back I won’t be able to afford to travel so I know I need to make the most of it now.

Nobody knows what the future holds and I have learnt from experience that life doesn’t always go to plan however I am the type of person that needs to have goals and dreams. So Universe, I’m putting it out there, here is my checklist of places to visit and things to do before I will be completely ready and happy to go home.  Life is too short to have regrets so this is why I know I need to achieve the list before I will feel ready to go back.

-Venice Carnival

-Greek Islands

-Ibiza

-Carcassonne for Bastille Day

-Southern France

-Russia

-Amsterdam

-Italy in depth

-Morocco

-Oktoberfest

-Munich to see Neuschwannstein Castle

-Switzerland to spend time with Gotti and Goetti

-Poland

-Prague

It’s quite a big list isn’t it? When I see it in writing I know I may still be in London for quite some time but I know I can do it, it may take me a while but I’ll do it. And so I guess this list represents the next chapter in my life and the basis of my new blog.

Wish me luck dear readers!
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