So it feels like it’s time for a little update. I don’t have any huge or particularly exciting news to share. But, I thought it might be nice to write about (and hopefully read about!) what we have been getting up to since the Christmas […]
Crime in the Seychelles
It’s been about a year and a half since I wrote the post The Darker Side of Expat Life In The Seychelles and it’s still the most viewed page on my blog. I read it again the other day. It made me reflect on how I felt about being broken in to, and about crime in the Seychelles in general.
I thought I’d start writing those feelings down. I know that many of the people reading that post are researching if it’s safe to live in Seychelles and about crime in the Seychelles in general. Hopefully this post will give a bit more of a rational insight into how safe it feels to live here.
The original post was written a couple weeks after our house was broken in to while we were all asleep. Despite waiting those couple of weeks, I was still feeling very raw and vulnerable about it all.
At the time of writing I was wrestling with wanting to move from the house we were in. We have now moved. I must stress that the main reason was that Mark was promoted and we needed to be nearer to school. I was happy to move though, despite the house being made a lot more secure. When something like that happens it’s difficult to forget it. I was not sleeping properly and was paranoid about any person around. That would be the case wherever in the world it happened, of course!
Is it safe to live on Praslin?
I feel safe here. If I didn’t feel safe we would have moved on by now, without a doubt. No matter how much we love it here, or how well Mark’s career is going, our family safety will always come first.
We are all living safer though, which is important. By that, I mean we are all more aware of keeping ourselves and our valuables safe. That seems a bit ridiculous to read. I don’t mean that we ever felt like we weren’t looking after ourselves properly, but we have certainly been guilty of living naively of the fact that crime existed.
At night I still wake up thinking I can hear someone in the house, I hate that. I don’t know if that will ever go away. Maybe it’s best if it doesn’t though. Perhaps living with that fear will help to keep us safe. I hope so.
Do I think expats are targeted for crime? In short, yes. Someone did comment on the post saying that I was arrogant to think that (I chose not to publish that one!!!) I don’t think that all expats are targeted, it is a generalisation, and of course Seychellois are also victims of robberies too.
Is there a safer side of the island?
We have been in our new house for over a year now and I do feel pretty safe here. There was a feeling at the time that the side we are living now is safer. Honestly, I don’t think that is the case. I know of break ins all over the island.
Sadly a house very near to ours was recently broken into. It was a reality check and a reminder that it can happen anywhere.
What type of crime happens here?
I’m pleased to say that on Praslin (I don’t want to say for Mahe as I really don’t know!) I have not heard of any violent crime towards expats. There is very little violent crime at all. This definitely helps in feeling safer.
The main type of crime undoubtedly is theft. Mostly it will be for small easy to sell items such as hard drives, tablets, smart phones and jewellery. Perhaps the saddest thing is that things stolen are mostly sold for drug money.
Drugs are undoubtedly, a growing problem here. I’m told its worse on Mahe than Praslin. I will say that it is, by no means, at the point where you can feel or sense that when you’re out and about. I don’t ever feel unsafe when I’m out. Of course, you wouldn’t want to leave valuables lying around anywhere, but that is no different to anywhere else in the world.
Will it happen again?
I spoke to Mark about this and if he felt it would ever happen again. Sadly, we agreed, the answer to that is almost certainly, yes. The house we are living in is a lot more secure, and as I mentioned we live a lot more aware of the possibility of theft and act accordingly. But, no house is perfect and we are not perfect.
We don’t live in fear of it happening again, we lead normal daily lives. Now we just live with our eyes more open to the fact that theft happens. We keep our valuables secure and have a bit of a routine to ensure that no doors or windows are left unlocked while we are out, or at night. Nothing major, just normal sensible security. We should have done it from the start, but I don’t mind admitting that I did love that little safe bubble we felt like we lived in for the first couple of years here!
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!