Thursday, 23 July 2009

The Good The Bad And The Ugly

Back in April 2008 I made my lists of things I was and wasn't looking forward to about leaving the UK and coming here. Well now it is time to do the same but in reverse....

What I am looking forward to...

English countryside - walks
London parks and play areas and toddler proof areas
Seeing friends and family
Not having stairs - JoJo perches precariously on the top of ours constantly and then edges his way down, making my heart shudder! Today he chucked down a 3kg water melon and I was mostly relieved that it wasn't his head!!
Cool weather! Ah, fresh crisp autumn mornings, winter chills, the children not smelling constantly of sweat, not being required to wash numerous changes of clothes...
Seeing JoJo in all the cute trousers and hoody tops we have been given for him, not to mention the pair of big boy boots!
Not having people appearing in our flat before I am even up and dressed
Apples, berries, blackberry picking, pies and crumbles, custard
Eating soup in cold weather (LissaLou is constatingly commenting on the illogicality of eating hot food in hot weather and well, I agree!)
Parsnips, broccoli
Proper sausages (none of this saucisson business!)
Being able to prepare healthier food - wholemeal flour here I come!
Limiting biscuits, cakes etc (and certainly NO biscuits at 6am! That cheeky JoJo begs to go downstairs first thing as he knows exactly what his Papy has waiting for him...)
Not being constantly surrounded by people with everything we do open to their viewing
Being independent
More uninterrupted time with the girls and as a family
Fresh milk (none of this UHT nonsense)
Bertie not working evenings and Saturday mornings
Not paying an arm and a leg for everything!
Being able to visit lots of places (island life is great but, well, it is limited!)
Internet shopping
Back to organic and fair trade shopping
Having a garden
Cultural delights such as theatres and music (okay, even if we never get to them it is nice to know that they are there!)

And just to balance it, what I will miss or am not looking forward to...

Ok, let's start with the obvious - the beaches, the tropical rainforest, the beautiful scenery
The rural nature of life here - when we drive, it takes 2 minutes to leave the town and get into the beautiful countryside (oh, if only that were the case in London!)
The fresh fruit, often free for picking
Visiting Pika
Being next to the sea
Small town life
Always having someone around to chat to or to guard a sleeping baby
Large bedrooms
Washing drying on the balcony in a day
Bertie being around a lot
Bertie shouting "Whey!" to practically everyone he meets
Being able to meet up with folk easily because they just arent doing anything else
Hearing Papy and Mamie laughing their way through their favourite soaps

Seeing the kids, especially JoJo, with his grandparents and other relatives
Heating bills
February (let's be honest, I probably will not be loving winter so much by then - those long nights and short days will undoubtedly be getting less beautiful by then!)

Busy hectic London life and consumerist society
Travelling for hours to get somewhere
Parking restrictions
Living in a detached house (this is a new and scary one for me!!)
Crime filled London (despite all the folk here say about crime leves rising, and even despite the noisy bar next to our house turning very quiet even since a police raid discovered arms and drugs, it still feels much safer here - after all, back home we would never dream of leaving our house unlocked and random items out on the verandah - unless they were chained down of course!)

For your info, Lissalou's list consists of NO ANTS AND MOSQUITOES whilst Bertie's consist of PLAYING GOLF. Some people are just more concise!


evie winter said...

Did I tell you I was telling one of my friends how I would be getting back into the world of cbeebies soon and she said, I thought your sister doesn't allow tv. To which I replied, ah buy Grandma does!
Interesting to see your lists and compare them with mine coming home last year. The crime really isn't that bad - the independence makes it worth while I think.

Giulietta said...

I noticed this week that the brambles on Hampstead Heath are coming on nicely.

CBE said...

Hi Heather - wish I was going to be able to see you soon! Your year has gone by so fast (at least from my point of view!). I hope you keep your blog going, I love reading it...