6 November 2011


I’m writing this while sitting on a huge, comfy couch in a spacious holiday house in Old Hunstanton, Norfolk. D and I are about to have a leisurely breakfast, then M and A will drive down to one of their favourite pubs, we'll go for a 7km walk and have lunch. Yesterday we also started the day with croissants, then D and I walked about 8km along the coast path to Thornham, where we met M and A, went to Titchwell Marsh for some wandering and bird spotting (we spotted Rory McGrath in the car park, which was a highlight for me!) and then had lunch at a great little deli café. We’ve joked since before we left that our plans run out after the Norfolk holiday and, with the exception of a couple of family get-togethers and “Let’s have dinner!” potential engagements, that remains true.

Two days ago, our one month anniversary of arriving in the UK slipped by without any excited blog posts or tweets from us. In fact, it was only marked by us saying to each other, “Hey, did we arrive on the 4th?” and “Oh yeah, it’s been one month”.

There haven’t been that many blog posts from us, have there? I’ve felt a bit resistant to blogging about our comings and goings in the way I/we usually do when we’re over here (something like a daily diary with the super boring bits taken out and photos added in). Doing that feels like a chore – and I think it weighs so heavily because there isn’t really an end in sight. Other than our 5-6 month gallivant around Europe back in 2005 (when we started this blog), we haven’t been travelling for more than six weeks at a time. When we travel for that sort of period, the blog inevitably falls behind a week or two – but it’s easy to reminisce and pore over photos when we get home, and write the last few blog posts with a tinge of nostalgia.

That’s not going to happen this time. We’re not going home next week. We’re just doing life: it’s not going to pause suddenly and give us time to catch up with blog posts and photo uploads and postcards (we’ve bought half a dozen, written none!) and phone calls and conversations with friends and paperwork and whatnot. This is it, we’ve migrated/repatriated!

There are other things reminding me of the permanence of this move, too. I’m looking for jobs and internships (I’ve applied for one and have another half a dozen lined up to do when we get back to London) and D’s applying for his course. I need to set up a bank account, which is already proving difficult. I will need a haircut in a week or so and I’ll have to go through the whole horrible process of trying to find a friendly, inexpensive, decent hairdresser. In another couple of months, I’ll need to get my T injection. Before then, I need to figure out whether to register with a local doctor or if I’ll go to a travel clinic. At some point I'll get my examiners' reports back for my dissertation and I'll have to do some more work on that. Will I get a desk, go to a café every day, work on the couch? One of my favourite shirts has a big hole in the armpit and M and A don’t have a sewing machine. Do I buy one? Borrow one? Take the shirt to be mended (it’s an old shirt, not worth the money)? Throw it out? Or (if you know me, you’ll see this coming) keep the shirt inevitably until I manage to repair it (when?) or detach myself from it (might take a long time!).

Because this is a relatively long-term move, it’s hard to write as I usually would when we’re travelling for a month or so. Maybe once our plans run out and we get down to the business of making a more permanent life here we actually will have time to reminisce about our travels and edit and upload photos and write blog posts and do all this admin – but at the moment I’m just having a fun and relaxing holiday!

Now, for a toasted cheese sandwich and a cup of tea.


  1. Totally understand the 'blog is a chore' attitude. I always give up on my travel blogs pretty quickly because of that.


  2. thanks for the comments, you two! :)