Wow. The fact that we’ve moved across Europe and are living in a new country is really starting to sink in. We’ve finally unpacked the last boxes, have started to hang up pictures and our apartment finally starting to look more like a home than a warehouse filled with boxes.
It’s really all starting to feel real now which has got me thinking about our time in the UK and about things we took for granted and of course about how we think our life will be over the next few years.
Inevitably there’s going to be a lot of change which is both exciting and scary at the same time. Here are just a few of the things we’re looking forward to, things we’ll miss and things we definitely won’t miss!
Things We Won’t Miss.
I don’t understand why there aren’t driving lessons on the motorway (although it explains a lot) no one indicates and there’s a rather lax interpretation of a red light. Bad signage, especially in roundabouts and worn away signage printed onto the road that is bound to be covered by waiting cars. Uff.
Trains and public transport.
Public transport in the UK is pretty disgraceful especially considering the amount you’re paying for it. I’m not saying that it’s perfect everywhere else but when a two-hour train journey down to London can cost you over £300 and you don’t even get a seat something has gone very wrong. Punctuality also doesn’t seem to be something that the British trains are good at!
I know this is going to sound really harsh (and I really don’t mean to offend anyone) but I’ve never lived anywhere where I’ve come across so many people are unreliable. People say they’ll call you back and don’t, tradesmen say they’ll turn up and don’t, people send you documents and forget half of them. People just don’t seem to take pride in their work and there doesn’t seem to be any long term planning at all. This is, of course, a generalisation and reflects our personal experiences. Maybe we’ve just been unlucky? Oh, and if you’re going to copy and paste emails to the masses, please remember to at least change the names of the recipients.
Mrs? Ms? Miss?
I have to admit that I find it weird to be asked if I’m Miss or Mrs. What difference does it make? Men don’t have versions of their title when they’re married, so why should women?
Home alarm systems going off.
It’s so annoying that people don’t have their alarm systems under control. Home alarms are rare in Germany so we’re hopeful that our days of getting woken up at 6 in the morning by random alarms are behind us.
I know it’s kind of cliche and we loved living in Manchester but there was so much rain. Maybe it’s just because this summer was particularly miserable, but the constant rain is something we definitely won’t miss.
Things we’ll miss.
Kind of obvious really but we’ve been so lucky to have met the most amazing, kind and generous people. We’ll miss everyone so much that it’s hard to put into words. Needless to say, there’s a reason we’re renting an apartment with a guest bedroom & we’re hoping for a lot of visitors!
Accents. (some of them at least)
This is a bit of a weird thing to miss but we really love how accents in the UK change from region to region. Sometimes you just have to travel 20 minutes down the road and it’s changed completely.
Things have a way of working out somehow and people seem more relaxed when things don’t go quite to plan.
Shopping on Sundays.
Shopping in Germany can be a complete pain. Whilst I’m a super organised kind of person, I’m awful at planning ahead when it comes to food shopping. I can’t tell you a number of times we’ve had to nip out on a Sunday evening because we’ve run out of something essential. I guess we’d better start improving our food planning or we may end up going hungry.
British people are super friendly (for the most part anyway!). I love how people apologise for everything and even if I find it weird to be called things like “love”, “darling”, “flower” and “petal” when I’m out shopping, I do kind of like the quirkiness of it.
I love the way people are polite and let you go first if you were there first. It just makes life so much more pleasurable when people are polite and friendly and no one likes when people push in, do they?
I know that English food doesn’t have the best of reputations in the rest of the world but there are things we’ll definitely miss. Manchester obviously has a great selection of restaurants and bars but the things we’ll really miss are sausage rolls, bacon butties and crumpets. Breakfast is obviously never going to be the same again!
Calling people by their first names.
I’m absolutely dreading having to call people Mr X and Ms Y. Using someone’s surname is something that creates a certain amount of distance and it’s so much more relaxed, friendly and open when you use people’s first names. I also think that it makes it easier to get to know people on a personal level and it definitely takes away any awkwardness when you don’t know if you should be using their first or surname.
Things We’re Looking Forward To.
Yes, I know that food is also o n the list of things we’ll miss but equally we’re looking forward to trying lots of new things and discovering new deliciousness. Bread, currywurst, germknödel, schnitzel are definitely some of the classics that we love and it’s going to be fun to discover new and interesting places.
Getting to know a new city is always exciting. I felt the same about Manchester when we first moved there and I’m sure that I know more secret passages, random facts and have seen more attractions than most people that have lived here their whole lives. Berlin is a huge city with loads of areas to discover and we can’t wait to see it all!
Meeting new people.
I’ll be completely honest here – it’s something I’m excited about but it also scares me at the same time. I guess the older you get the harder it gets to meet new people (or at least that’s the way it feels).
Finding a new home in need of renovation!
Our main priority over the next few months is going to be finding a new home for us to renovate. There are some amazing apartments in Berlin so hopefully, we’ll find somewhere we love soon!
What do you love about the country you live in? What would you miss most if you moved?