It’s something a lot of people dream about, moving to paradise islands like the Seychelles. But how many of them are prepared to do the work? To put in the effort to make that dream a reality? If you truly long for a change in […]
Tag: expat life
There has been a lovely tag going around recently called ‘The Expat Tag’ where expat bloggers around the world are sharing their answers to the same 10 questions. Its a great way to share a real insight into what expat life is like all around the world!
Ive been tagged by Adventures Of A Jersey Girl and by Wandermustfamily thanks ladies for the tag! I have to say, that normally, I am terrible at keeping up with tags and things. But, I really liked the idea of this one, plus I’m on a ‘be a super organised blogger’ mission right now!
So, here are my answers to the 10 expat tag questions! Hope you enjoy 🙂
1. Where were you born, where did you grow up and where do you currently live?
I was born in Wales, UK. I lived there until I was about 6 and then moved to Plymouth in the South West of England and stayed there until I was 17. At 17 I moved to San Diego California with my Mum, Dad and Brother for a military posting for around 2 and a half years. After that I went back to Plymouth for University, that’s where I met Mark. We moved to Seychelles together in 2012 and have been here for almost 5 years now!
2. What made you leave your home country?
Having lived abroad for a couple years already, I knew that I didn’t want to spend the rest of my life living in the UK. Mark is a teacher and was working just ridiculous hours. He definitely needed a better work/life balance. We also knew we wanted to start a family at some point, and that we wanted to raise our kids somewhere abroad. We started to look for teaching jobs abroad for Mark as that seemed like the best, and most straightforward way for us to be able to move.
3. What type of reactions do you get when you meet new people and tell them where you are from?
When we tell people we live in Seychelles there tends to be one of these reactions:
- You live in Paradise! You are so lucky!
- Where is that? (I’ll admit, I didn’t know where it was until Mark got the interview for the job!!)
4. What was the easiest/hardest part in adjusting to your new country?
The hardest part was how terrible the internet was! Coming from the UK and having unlimited internet at home and pretty much free wifi everywhere, it was so tough to get used to having only 9GB a month! It was really expensive too! Thankfully, it has improved in the 5 years we have been here but its still no where near unlimited and we would love to be able to call home more often than we can.
The easiest part for us was that we came out with a group of other people. There were 4 other new teachers starting at the school the same time as Mark.So, we had each other to lean on for support, and to bounce excitement, frustrations, fears and everything else that comes with moving to a new country off each other! Of course, moving to a beautiful country didn’t hurt in making the transition easy too!
5. Images, words, or sounds that sum up the expat experience you’ve had so far
5 years have gone by in a blur, i feel like we arrived, had kids and are now a family all in 5 minutes!! So here is our first glimpse of our new island home Praslin, arriving on the inter island flight from Mahe island,
Me just before my c-section with Arthur!
Finally, here is us pretty much as we are now….This was taken on Christmas day 2016 on the beach near our house!
6. Your favourite food or drink item in your new country?
My favourite local food is without doubt grilled fish, especially Red Snapper. Always super fresh and locally caught, you really can’t beat it! People that know me, know how weird it is for me to say that. I never ate fish before we moved to Seychelles. When we moved here, we really didn’t get much information about the place at all. We genuinely bought fishing rod out thinking we were going to be having to go fishing for our dinner every night! We were over the moon when we went to the shop and found some frozen chicken and minced beef!!!
7. What is the one thing you said “yes” to in your new city that you wouldn’t say “yes” to back home?
Aside from eating fish, seriously that was a big deal for me!! I guess
8. Are there any cultural norms/phrases in your new country which you can not stand?
The thing that annoys me the most, is also something that I really love about Seychelles. I know, that’s weird! But it is that EVERYTHING closes at midday on Saturday and all day on Sunday! Even on weekdays the banks close at 2pm! It can be frustrating getting things done here, there are no direct debits or online payments for things. But, as I said, I do also love that about Seychelles. It means that there’s no waiting on the phone for hours to speak to a call centre. If you have a problem with something, you go to the right people and get it sorted. That of course, becomes easier the longer you are here and the more people you know!
9. What do you most enjoy doing in your new country?
Without doubt my favourite thing is being out as a family. It always reaffirms why we moved here! To have a great outdoors life with our children!
10. Do you think you will ever move home for good?
Honestly, as much as it will upset my parents and mark’s to read this, I can’t see it. I would be foolish to say that we will definitely not go back, because who knows what the future holds. Right now, the Seychelles feels like home to us. Its a lovely place to raise kids in a relaxed outdoors lifestyle, that is exactly what we wanted when we had kids. I don’t think we will necessarily be in Seychelles forever, but again who knows!?
So that’s it for my expat tag! I hope you enjoyed! Because i’ve been a little slow on the uptake of this, I tag any expats that want to join in that haven’t already!!!
The time is here, Arthur has started school.
We are so proud of how our little man has got on.
I have taken Arthur in to school to play at get used to it for a while now, but it has only ever been for an hour or so and never on his own.
So I’ve said before but the international school here on Praslin starts in reception 1 (3yrs old) right up to 6th form where they do A-levels (18yrs old). Reception 1 is essentially nursery. The school follows the British curriculum so kids are doing as they would be in the UK.
To help get the little ones settled they are allowed to start in Reception 1 in the half term that they turn 3 years old. So Arthur is starting this last half term of the school year
We agreed with his teacher that Arthur would just come in for the mornings for now. He will go full time in September.
So, on the 30th May Arthur got his little school uniform on and off we went to school. I tried to get lots of obligatory first day of school pictures, Arthur was not all that interested in that though!!
It is a moment I’ve been trying to prepare myself for for what feels like ages now. I won’t lie, I’ve got myself upset many times just thinking about it all!!
We walked into school and his teacher met us outside, she took Arthur to the classroom and off he went. He gave me a kiss and said “bye bye mummy!” I was so proud at how he took it all in his stride!
I managed to hold back my tears until I got to the car where I allowed myself to have a couple minutes before telling myself to get a grip!!!
We are in the amazing situation that we know everyone at school really well and everyone has known Arthur since he was born so I knew that there were so many people there looking out for him…..including of course Mark, being the headteacher! I think he found a few extra reasons to pop down and have a little peek in the class for Arthur’s first day!!
I had lots of texts from different people, updating me through the morning letting me know what Arthur was up to which I loved!
Freddie and I had a nice quiet morning together, we had lots of stories and cuddles before his nap. I then had a couple hours to myself for the first time in AGES!! I didn’t really know what to do with myself and as a result wasn’t all that productive!!
When I went to pick Arthur up he was really happy to see me and Freddie but didn’t want to go home, a good sign for sure!! We managed to get him in the car and then we had a lovely quiet and cuddley afternoon at home.
That evening, we got an email with lots of photos from Arthur’s first day by his teacher, it made my day to get a peek into what he had been up to that day!
After a couple of days we’ve got into the swing of it now those couple of hours when Freddie is napping flies by as I get as much done as I possibly can – I had visions of being able to spend more time blogging, that REALLY hasn’t happened!!
It’s now been 2 weeks of school for Arthur and he’s absolutely loving it. He is settling in so well, we really couldn’t be more proud of him.
His teacher tells us that he’s joining in with activities more and more every day which makes me really happy to hear. Arthur comes home and sings songs he’s learned at school, it amazes us how quickly he’s picked things up!!
Arthur has been napping again in the afternoon most days after school, he comes home so happy but tired.
I know that starting school has been so good for him in so many ways but particularly for getting to socialise with other kids his own age!
For me its really nice to see him coming out of his shell with other people, he has always been quite shy around people he doesn’t know. I can see his confidence growing in even this short time.
I felt really sad at the ‘end of an era’ of having my now not so little guy at home with me every day, but seeing how happy he is and how good it has been for him has really helped me to get over that. We are now celebrating the start of the school era for Arthur!