In just under a month I’ll be arriving in Australia to start my brand new shiny life as an expat. That’s what I’m telling myself anyway, to get through all the stuff I have to do to get there. Which has been a lot. Let me fill you in on what’s happened since my last update post, where everything started.

This post will cover getting rid of our stuff, my unexpected visit to Australia, and unexpected car grief. Let’s go!

The Good

Visiting Australia ¦¦ I made it to Australia! A little earlier than planned but the visa came through (the temporary one, not my main transfer visa) so off I went. I managed to take out almost all of my clothes in my luggage allowance on that trip, which cut down on shipping costs and means I don’t have to wait for my boxes to arrive to have something to wear.

I really enjoyed my brief trip out to Australia. It was hard work but I had a great time and, although I’m still nervous, I’m glad to have enjoyed it so much. Yes there’s still a lot to think about, but overall I think we’ve made the right choice. It was just weird being there without S so I’ll be very happy to have him with me next time.

Selling stuff ¦¦ We’ve sold all our furniture! And our car! I’ve also approximately halved my wardrobe – some stuff has been sold on eBay, some given to my sisters. The rest have gone to the charity shop and the really ratty stuff has gone in the clothes donation bin.

I’ve given away my entire craft stash to a very enthusiastic sister, who is now texting me pictures of things asking what on earth they are for.

Shipping stuff ¦¦ We have sent our boxes! All 16 of them have been waved off onto a lorry and hopefully we’ll see them in 6-8 weeks time in sunny Sydney. That’s the plan. It was quite an effort to get them all packed so hopefully we won’t be going through them on arrival thinking “whyyyy did I pack this junk??!”.

Parties ¦¦ We have had some great bon voyage bashes; at home in Bedford with a few folk, with the in-laws, and with work.  My colleague picked a very fitting venue for my work leaving drinks:

I’m done! ¦¦ I’ve officially finished work! I have handed over my projects and today I’ll hand over my laptop so I’m officially out of here.

The Bad

Time ¦¦ I now have just 4 days left in the UK. Arrrrrrrrrrrggghhh.

Nerves ¦¦ I’m nervous. My trip to Australia made things REAL and it’s SCARY. Again it’ll be less so when I’ve got S with me, but still. Yikes.

Emotional times ¦¦ The goodbyes have been rough, it goes without saying.

I have been surprised at how weighty some decisions have been, though. For example, selling our car. It’s just a piece of machinery and I’m not at all a car enthusiast, so this shouldn’t have been a hard thing for me. But it was. Buying our car was very tied up with everything that happened with my Dad, and things all came full circle and hit me around the gut area when it came time to sell.

I can’t explain it better than that, safe to say I wasn’t expecting to feel the way I did when I drove that car back to the dealership.

Leaving my company ¦¦ The last few days at work have made me realise how lucky I am to work for my company. I’ve had a great time these last 3.5 years and have worked with some amazing people. Yes it has its challenges, as does any company, but they are extremely minimal compared to what I’ve experienced in the past. Despite moving within my company, it’s a completely different operating company I’m moving to, and things will be different. During my trip out to Australia my eyes were opened as to just how different it will be. I hope I will have just as good a time in the new company but… it’s still a leap of faith.

Planning ¦¦ We haven’t planned much for our pre-pat trip, other than booking flights and hotels. I guess that’s a good enough start, but it’s making the over planner in me feel quite jumpy. Still, I have to remember that the primary objective of this holiday is to relax and disconnect, so perhaps jam packing our days with activities is not the way to do it.

I reckon if we plan to eat a lot (like this amazing gluten free Vietnamese food I found in Sydney) then we can’t go far wrong. Right?!

The Ugly

As before, I’ve decided that I’ll be sharing The Ugly side of things via email. That way, I can share a bit more honestly on things like work and personal matters that I don’t want searchable on t’internet. Seeing as you’re all my friends, I’d just feel a bit happier doing it this way.

So if you want to know The Ugly, just put your email address in the box and I’ll add you to the list. You’ll get mail from me 2-3 days after you see this post, just to give everyone a chance to sign up who wants to.

Catch you in your inbox!

-Rachel

P.S. I’m handing my laptop back in today, so I’ll be slow to respond to comments and I may not post for a little bit aside from those I’ve got scheduled. I’m planning on doing some electronics shopping in Bangkok (reclaimable tax yesss) so if you’ve got a laptop recommendation come at me.