It seems just like yesterday that I moved overseas. And man, what a change it has been on my life. To be honest, I thought I’d be living in a more interesting place and that I would have made heaps more friends. But, Clacton is….well, Clacton.
I have made an effort to go to London and go dancing often because it is a great way to meet people and to get out of Clacton. London provides me with dance, socialising and new friends.
Since moving here I have really noticed how I have had to step out of my comfort zone and try new things. I never really thought about how easy it is to travel on your own. Solo-travel is exciting and fun, although sometimes I do wish my friends here would travel with me (I have a bunch of kiwi friends in Clacton…we all got placed here as we went through the same recruitment agency). However, I am working on them and hopefully I am slowly convincing them to come and travel with me sometimes.
I really came here for the travel. Yes I work, but since the place I work at isn’t the nicest, I try to go home and not think too much about work.
I have become so much more independent. I was already independent before leaving home. But like I said before I have had to do a lot more by myself. I have had to sort things out by myself. I don’t really have the support here that I had home..support in terms of parental support. They support from far away!
I think the thing is at home you have the support network. If I had moved out of home in NZ to elsewhere in NZ then at least I’d still have family close by. But here they are 20+ hours away. So that means if something happens you have to deal with it. If you are super sick, you have to do everything yourself, even if you don’t feel like it.
I think I have become more open minded. Particularly towards immigration. I’ve never had a problem with it. But I never really had anyone talk to me and be like ‘well, you immigrants just come here and use the medical system because it’s free’. I was kind of shocked. I didn’t really think of myself as an immigrant. I thought of myself as just some random who had moved over here for work – an expat. Now I realise, yes I am an immigrant. I just can’t stand it when people complain about immigrants and say they shouldn’t be coming here because they are ripping off the medical system/economy/social service systems. People have no idea what circumstances have caused people to move over here.
My brother brought up a good point the other day – because I was saying about how so many people I talk to complain about immigration – he said ‘the UK went and colonised half the world and encouraged immigration to their colonies, and then complain about people coming to their country’. I ended up saying that to someone and they were shocked…saying ‘but it’s different’. How is it different?
Anyway, this was not supposed to be a rant about immigration, so I will move on to my next point:
I am more confident in who I am as a person. I hold myself differently and make sure I always be me. I stand up for myself.
I think it is so important to be yourself. There is intense pressure to become a ‘clone’ because there is the fact that you may be laughed at for being different. But I’ve gone past the point of caring.
It’s to the point of ‘I think you confuse me with someone who gives a fuck’.
I think I have become a lot more cynical about things.
And that might be seen as a bad thing. This whole post may be seen as bitter and mean. But to be honest, I haven’t had the greatest experience (apart from travelling and going to dance/meeting new people). The place I work at has driven me crazy and I don’t know how I am going to survive teaching there until December. I don’t know how I am going to go back there after summer holidays. All my friends there are leaving.
I don’t know what to do. One moment I think ‘I will go home and come back over in February’. The next I think that I can stick it out because it’ll be annoying cleaning everything up and taking everything home only to pack it all up in 6 months time.
It’s just the thought of going back to that workplace that is making me feel sick. I’ll have an awesome summer holiday but there will always be that niggling thought at the back of my head about going back to work.
What would you do? Would you go home, recharge and think about what to do next?
Or would you stick it out?