There’s no such place as perfection

Lots of people heading over to live from the UK want to know, what’s life in Perth really like? Is it all blue skies, suntan cream and sandy beaches? Is it better than the UK in every way? Is everyone as ‘happy as Bruce’ and do the kangaroos all smile and wave you on your way as you speed off to work your 5 hour day?

In a word, and a very short one at that, NO.

Despite popular misconception, it does get cold here as well – Perth has long winters with not much sun and a lot of rain. Just like the UK, everyone isn’t happy all of the time, and kangaroos don’t really smile. I’d say if anything they smirk.

Some people, understandably, given how many burning hoops they have to leap through to get a visa, want to believe that Perth is the answer to all problems on earth – and the very opposite of evil old England. Yes, without a doubt it’s a lovely place to live and the lifestyle is so laid back that many have trouble getting upright again. But like every country it’s far from perfect.

Houses are still expensive and the cost of living high. Jobs are often hard to come by, and the working hours and commutes long. Older kids are often tempted by the huge drug scene on offer. Gang crime, knife crime and gun crime still fills up the news. Politicians still fail to deliver and continue to talk out of their backsides… So Perth may be many things to many people, but if you’ve built it up in your mind to be ‘perfection’,Β  then you might just be shocked to find it’s not the answer to all of your prayers.

Those migrants fresh from the plane and still marveling at the vastness of the sky, the millions of stars on view at night and the wide open beaches will tell you that ‘Perth is as good as it gets’. And that, I think can be very misleading to those trying to decide whether to make the move over. Firstly because the reality of life overseas (once the initial excitement has worn off, whether that takes a week, a month or ever a year) can sometimes be very different to what people expect, and secondly peoples idea of ‘as good as it gets’ can vary greatly.

Many people move over from the UK for a better lifestyle and a house in the sun, a chance to escape a country that is spinning out of control. But despite this, a massive 40% of those who move over from the UK still decide to go back again. That’s an awful lot of people making an extremely costly and difficult decision to return – a decision no one would ever take lightly, or do without good reason. Moving your life around the world is a big enough upheaval in the first place, moving back and starting again is an even bigger one.

Everyone has their own different reasons for not wanting to stay. Some find the distance from friends and family too great. Some feel too cut off from the rest of the world. Some realise that problems faced in the UK are also faced over here. Perhaps some just didn’t want to spend their weekends surfing, hiking, fishing, camping and drinking beer around a BBQ. Or maybe once they’d had a year of cooking sausages in Kings Park, eating fish & chips at Hillarys and trying to spot animals at Perth Zoo the novelty of it all simply wore off. Who knows, maybe the reality of life here simply never lived up to the hype.

So if you’re leaving England and heading south in search of perfection, then it might be wise to really get the lay of the land before your feet touch down on the dusty ground. This way you cut then risk of being surprised, disappointed or disillusionedΒ  by what you find. Because if you arrive ready to start your new life Down Under with your eyes wide open, then you will probably love it all and never look back.

To quickly go back to the original question of what’s it like to live in Perth, here’s my answer:

Today I got woken up early by the radio. It was grey, wet and cold outside and the drone of irritating DJ’s put me back to sleep – until the dog barked millimetres away from my ear. I dragged two children from their beds and fed them breakfast. I made my own breakfast and then watched it conceal into concrete as I hunted for last nights homework sheet. I stepped on the dogs tail as he rushed past me to the backdoor. It was still pouring with rain, so as the school bell went in the distance I threw the kids into the car.

I returned from the school run, cleared up breakfast, emptied the dishwasher, put on the washing machine, swept half the garden off the kitchen floor. I then rounded up my son, his water cup and potty and headed out to the supermarket. We navigated the aisles with a renegade trolley while I fed him pancakes to keep him quiet and contained. I loaded the car, filled up with petrol and unloaded the car – all in the rain.

Next came lunch, as requested by my son. I watched him push it around his plate for so long that I gave up, ate it myself and then cleared up. He got all his toys out just to see what would take his fancy – we played with Lego, blocks and trains. The school bell sounded, so we set off with the dog in tow. We ran to the park so the dog could wear himself out while we all stood under a tree in the downpour. I supervised homework, cleared up the house, cooked dinner for the kids and remembered the washing in the machine from this morning. I shoved it all in the tumble drier as it was still raining.

Fed both kids their dinner – felt my blood pressure rise. Cleared up the mess. Supervised their bath time – felt my blood pressure rise further. Overcame a toddler meltdown when Tellytubbies said ‘Goodbye’. Shoehorned two kids into bed and then cleared up the house. Again. Started dinner. Again. Husband arrived home. We both collapsed in front of TV – exhausted. The dog barked at next doors cat and woke me up at 1am. I lay there staring at the clock and waiting to go back to sleep again. I started to panic when I couldn’t fall asleep. Then I suddenly remembered I’d forgotten to turn the tumble drier on. I went to sleep convinced I could already smell the washing going mouldy.

I got woken up early by the radio….

Point made? Living in Perth is like living in many other countries around the world – 5% sunshine and light, 95% reality of your day-to-day life. So whether you choose to live at the top of the world or down here at the bottom, your bills will still mount up and your funds sometimes run low, your children will still squabble, bicker and sulk, and the contents of your ironing basket will still have doubled in size everytime you walk past.

That, as they say, is life.

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30 thoughts on “There’s no such place as perfection

  1. Depends on where you came from, and why you came.

    Part of your typical daily story did not involve being mugged, raped or killed on your way out of your own house. Your kids go to a school where the teachers can actually speak english. (Although I have to add that “Australian” is not quite “English”, is it?)

    You weren’t awoken by your alarm screaming because some permanently disadvantaged idiot wants to steal your TV or rape your baby.

    Your husband actually has a job to come home from, irrespective of his race or gender. When you returned from the supermarket, you still had a car waiting for you where you left it, and no one attempted to hijack your car when you stopped at the red light.

    Best of all, no over-populated taxi rushed by and pushed you off the road, just to continue to run over three red lights while the driver was downing his third Black Label beer.

    No place is perfect, but some places are more perfect than others…

  2. Very true Heiko, and a sobering thought indeed of the incredibly difficult lifestyles that so many people have.

    I have to say the post is aimed more at the English who come over and the debate amongst POMS about which country is ‘best”. As I said neither country is ‘best’ in anyway.

    I certainly wasn’t referring to those who come from countries where your day-to-day safety and basic human rights are at risk. Compared to such countries, Perth must indeed seem like heaven on earth, and yes, we are very lucky for the lives that we lead. I know too much of the terrible things that have taken place in Zimbabwe and the people, including my own family, who have been forced to leave because of it. I know that I certainly would never want to return there again, I’d rather remember it how it was and be grateful that I was never personally affected by the sort of things you wrote about.

    1. I wasn’t aware of your Zimbo connections. Looks like you have some good blood in your family line!

      I noticed that this was directed at Poms, but I just had to throw in my zimdollars worth. It just helps to get perspective.

      I have only been here for a year, but I’ll always be a big supporter and advertiser of WA and the sandgroper lifestyle – I really love it here! Not because of where I come from, but just because I like it.

      (They just need to stop saying that I have an accent – they’re the ones with the accent!)

  3. 40% return back to England? Crikey! As a true Aussie would say. You wouldn’t be able to drag me back. If I had to guess I would have put it at a maximum of 20%, I never knew it was so high.

    But those figures pretty much underline exactly what you are saying. Perhaps some come and live down under thinking it is the answer to all their dreams. But there is still the small matter of living day to day.

    But I have to say, living in Brisbane I don’t see too many grey days, I reckon at the least 300 days a year are hot and sunny with clear blue skies. It’s so much harder to be miserable here than it was in England.

  4. great post, but feeding your son pancakes? can i suggest a piece of fruit maybe, give your son a good chance of being healthy and lively, and stay away from carbs/sugar and wheat. if you dont believe me read gary taubes or dr eades.

    1. Thanks for the comment, but it did make me laugh about how I should give him a chance of being healthy!

      Anyone who has read some of previous posts will know that when it comes to my kids diet, I am obsessive to the point of being paranoid. I am completely anti junk food for kids, they don’t eat sweets, never have fizzy drinks and only have chocolate for treats. I believe my son still has some of his Easter egg sat in the fridge – in September! One of the things he likes to eat a lot of is fruit. On his own he gets through about 3 apples, 6 kiwi, 5 bananas and half a watermelon a week! If he eats too much more I’m scared he’ll grow a rind and start passing pips!

      Thanks for your concern though, it’s nice to know that some people care about health, but don’t worry, the pancakes I fed him were actually bite sized pikelets for a treat!

      This post should put your mind at rest regarding how I feel about not giving kids a healthy diet.

  5. so you removed posts that you don’t agree with….bad form….while it seems you are able to have a free voice you dont let others.

    1. Not at all, there have been many comments left with differing views to my own and I have no issue with this at all. But this is my own blog and not an open forum, so if I don’t appreciate the tone in which a comment is being written, I have the right not to publish it – just as you have the right to express your views in your own blog. I also don’t appreciate people using my blog as a way to post a list of links, it is not a directory.

  6. Hi Rachel

    Again, another fabulous article. I have wondered what it would be like to live in Perth not that I have ever considered it seriously as life in the UK suits us fine. We know people who have emigrated over there who seem to have to tell us at every opportunity how wonderful it is. We never seem to get a balanced view as you have just given. So, thank you! As you say, happiness is within too.

    Also, can completely understand why you moderate the comments, there are a lot of very opinionated people out there, who may not have the required intelligence to comment respectfully!

    Regards
    Gina

    1. Hi Gina

      Thanks and I’m glad it helped! I think, actually I know that many people who come here don’t find it as great as they first thought it would be. Lots leave, but plenty stay and carry on complaining, and those who stay would NEVER admit to friends back in the UK that it’s not perfect!!!!

      Don’t worry, if you enjoy your life in the UK then you’re certainly not missing out on anything down here. Let me put it this way. This year it started to get cold in May, and 2 nights ago we had to light a fire to keep warm. That’s one very long wet, cold, grey and miserable winter. They don’t mention that on the Australia Propaganda Leaflet do they!

      As for the comments, I don’t normally moderate them as most people have manners. Those who don’t really shouldn’t waste their time leaving one!

      Rachel πŸ™‚

  7. Great post, but it to my mind it didn’t really address the point of what it was about Perth – apart from the rain and annoying breakfast show DJs – that is driving you or the other 40% of migrants to leave Australia?

    1. To go into why so many people leave would be a whole other post in itself, and one I’ve been meaning to write for a while! There are lots of reasons really – some could be the fact that the city is so isolated, the cost of travel to go anywhere, the often very insular mentality, the lack of history or culture, the lack of many places to go or visit (that don’t include a 6 hour drive), the limited shops, the fast food outlets that are taking over the place, the education system, the blinkered mentality, the cost of living, the often childish sense of humour, the lack of get up and go and the somewhat restricted options for those leaving school, the huge problem with drugs, the huge problem of boredom in young people – that in turn leads to petty crime and drugs, the flies, the extreme heat in the summer, finding work, affording housing, missing family – the fact that the place can be dull. Oh and lets no forget a lot of English leave Perth because there are too many English! Or rather too many of the sort of English that they left the UK to get away from.

      That said, the beaches are great, for half the year the weather is nice and if you like burnt sausages and beer you’ll be as happy as a pig in mud! Some people love it here, some people hate it. But at the end of the day it’s all a matter of what you like, what you’re looking for in life and what you’re used to.

      1. Lol. I one post, I think you’ve listed most of the reasons my partner gives as why she came to the UK from Australia. I think the only one I don’t yet understand is the lack of culture people talk about. I do still believe that we can offer our baby son a better start in life, if we bring him up in Aus as opposed to the ex-railway town we’re in today.

      2. Hi Rachael, I moved to Melbourne in late Dec ’08’ to live wi an Aussie guy I met briefly in the UK. I came over for 7wks prior to moving here but it was diifficult to work out daily life as it was going here and there a lot of the time. When the visa came through I kinda panicked cos I thought am I doing the right thing leaving family & friends and a good job, and the pressure of having to marry again when I had just sorted out my divorce! Anyway iam here and I have noticed how expensive everything is and how I feel there’s not many places to go to with different architecture, at lot of the places look the same. I have done a lot of travelling here and some of it iam not sure how fantastic it is made out to be, for instance “The great ocean road” yes it was nice, but repetitive, along the route! I came from West Yorkshire and I could go to the visit The Dales/Lake District, York, Leeds, London all in a short time with a buzz of life. Iam in a small place with one pub, which is empty a lot of the time (everyone goes out early!) . The beaches are empty, no sunloungers or parasolls or beach shacks!! The weather has been lousy here lately, its brightening up now tho. Work is hard to find like you say and to get anywhere is expensive (flights etc). The choice of shopping is limited, whr is Boots and Next and the rest!! Ha ha U gotta laugh…anyway my wingeing on, iam happy to be visiting the UK shortly to catch up with everyone…an expensive trip! That worries me getting time off to visit family and trying to get cheap flights! I havent got a job yet but it wont go down well iam sure, and the long hours too!! I could say sooo much more! Better stop! Byyeee for now, enjoyed reading all ya stuff…p.s. where are you from in England, down South?

      3. Hi Julie

        So many people seem to say exactly the same thing and I don’t think it’s really whinging, it’s more shock that it’s so different! I guess Australia (Perth especially) just isn’t the ‘buzzing’ and vibrant place to live as I thought it would be. And the weather is a shocker!!! Who knew it could be so wet and cold for half the year! Have you looked at Air Asia for flights? Granted it’s a low budget airline which really isn’t ideal for such a long trip, but they are really cheap. You can even book yourself business class (big seat!) with them for a fraction of what other airlines would charge for cattle class. Just pack sandwiches and don’t expect any service! Yes, I am from the south of England, though I was living in Cheltenham before moving over.

        Thanks for reading!
        Rachel

  8. Well said. It isn’t just Perth either – although some parts of the East Coast haven’t had rain for the past many years it can be just as depressing to wake up to a bright blue sky every morning and to hunt around on the bom site for bits of blue that always seem to dump somewhere else! The isolation is still here though and it is a heck of a drive to find something that is different.

    At the end of the day you still have to do the dishes and put out the rubbish and go to work to pay the mortgage.

    It was an ex PM that described Australia as the a*se end of the universe – didnt agree with most of what he said but I entirely agree with that quote!

    I hope your move to variety, culture and buzz is smooth and successful!

  9. Hi Rachel,

    Good honest posting and as you say, some people like the area and some will hate it. Obviously with a family you cannot just keep moving around the country, but do you think you may have been more settled in another State?

    1. Hi Colin. Yes, in hindsight this is definitely the wrong state for us, and moving somewhere more upbeat might have made our experience very different. But it’s very hard to gauge what is right from the other side of the world, and when you only have other people’s feedback and what you see on the TV to go on, it’s even harder to know. I’ve found that what people tell you about Perth and the day-to-day reality of life here are actually two very different things indeed. Live and learn!

  10. Hi I thought that was a very honest post, and I am in agreement with everything you said, i migrated to Sunny Brissy 4 yrs ago, and apart from the fact it never rains here, and we cant wash our cars, and have been on water restrictions for most of the time I have been here, the rest was just a normal exsistence, surviving without your family and friends. Great post I related to it

  11. Thanks for your honesty in this post. I think one of the biggest problems for many new arrivals in Perth is the level of expectation they have built up, thinking that it will be perfect as you say. Personally, I ended up in Perth totally unexpectedly in 2008-9 because my hubby’s work sent us there. Hardly knew what it looked like tbh and was too scared to do too much research incase I found I didn’t like it! Funnily enough, it worked out really well and I found I met loads of great people and took advantage of loads of good opportunities (study, career etc). However, think it would have been very different if I had built it up to be the answer to all our problems before we even touched down. That would be my lesson learned if we ever moved back or went to another country.

  12. Keeping up on your (good) post, I moved from France to Adelaide last year, and will move again in perth next year for a permanent job.
    The BIG difference between Oz and Perth or Adelaide is the level of crime, aggressivity, etc… Was fed up with my own country, and despite of a BIG lack of important things downunder (including my family, friends, some more culture and education, affordable decent food…) it’s still better than Fr and probably UK.
    It might be a matter of how many people are living per area + weather, but life is definitly better here, generally speaking.
    Thx for your blog anyway, cool !

    1. Thanks for the comment and for reading the blog. I think that everyone is looking for very different things when they move to Australia, and for many people they do indeed find the life they are looking for. For me, the lack of culture and questionable educational system just didn’t cut it and our family is far happier being back in the UK (with the affordable food!) but it’s always nice to hear from those who are loving life down there!

      Rachel πŸ™‚

  13. Hi Rachel, really enjoyed your blog! actually I found it by chance. I am actually considering applying for a position in Perth and wanted to round up my mind about it. I love outdoors but camping, fishing, snakes and related… big no-no πŸ™‚ Got some insight from friends, one from NYC believes moving there is not a good decision, he thinks there are no cultural events, no places to go, nothing …. one from Perth and living in US says it is very friendly but she would not be able to live there again… she was complaining about the slow pace of the town (both referred to Perth as a town not as a city!).
    For me the biggest -and probably the most important issue- is that it is so far away from home. On the other hand, Perth fills one of the top criteria on my list for a new job: english speaking place. I’ve been living in NL for a while, and actually I like it but couldn’t manage to learn dutch.
    So, basically the fact that it would take me at least 30hrs to go back home and that I would not be able to enjoy performances or explore small villages and cities around europe has to be weighted against a new adventure in a continent where I haven’t been yet… if at least it were Sydney! πŸ™‚
    Many thanks for sharing your posts! reading them reminded me that after all there is no place like home and Perth is just lilke any other posting, has pros and cons. Gosh! I hope I will take the right decision! Thanks. Roxana

    1. Hi Roxana
      Glad you enjoyed it and I hope it helped! Both your friends are right – yes, it’s friendly (though that doesn’t mean you’ll meet people you’ve got anything in common with) and the great outdoors has plenty to offer, but if you’re looking for culture then it’s limited to say the least! Perth may technically be a ‘city’ but it’s really a town, surrounded by 100’s of suburbs. You can walk the length of Perth ‘city’ in about 20 minutes, there are a handful of high rise building, a few shops and a couple of department stores. One small museum (minus the blue whale skeleton they advertise!), a few minor places to visit and a bell tower to look at. Go there at 5pm on a Saturday and it’s like a ghost town – everything (including cafes) are shut. That was a shock to me I have to say! Anyway, happy decision making! Rachel πŸ™‚

  14. Hi Rachel! Boy was I glad to find your blog! My family and I just received our Aussie visas but haven’t decided when to move just yet. I’m moving to Australia ‘kicking and screaming’ (inside at least!) and will most likely end up in Perth. Hubby’s family all immigrated to Perth and Brisbane years and years ago. Although we LOVE our life in the UK and being on the doorstep of Europe and North America, we’ve been completely alone here with no support system since they left.

    I feel I’m stuck between a rock and a hard place:
    1) Staying in lush and leafy Surrey, with the ‘potential’ to enjoy history, life, culture, class, fashion, and a buzzing London just 30mins away, BUT having to pay extortionate rates for a babysitter, the worry of leaving the kids (both under 4 years) with a stranger and in many ways taking a risk by doing so because you just can’t trust London transport and there’s no one to rely on to take over from the babysitter should anything happen to us…

    OR…

    2) Moving to the ‘arse of the universe’/Frumpy Hillbilly town (as I noticed on a trip to Perth last year), because all my brothers-in-law, their wives and families, and my in-laws live there, thereby offering us a real family support system.

    Perth may not be great on a day-to-day basis but knowing the kids will be loved and well taken care of by family in case of special occasions where hubby and I want to go out to a nice restaurant (by the way, are there any in Perth?! Ha!) or take a romantic long weekend trip to Bali, or even just be there for us in case we get into a pickle getting back home and the kids need picking up from school, etc…

    We’ve decided to give it a go for 4 years and see how we feel. But I don’t know if I can handle living in such a remote and backwards place for that long. I’ll miss being able to get on a train and go to the National Portrait Gallery to see the latest exhibition, or drive to historically rich places like Oxford or Stratford-Upon-Avon, or take a 2-hour flight to Spain to visit my side of the family, or even do a glamorous long weekend girly trip to New York! Oh man am I going to miss all that!!! 😦 And if nothing else, for me, being a linguist who speaks 4 languages, I am going to miss not hearing another language and interacting with various cultures at once! I actually stumbled across your blog after I googled ‘expats in Perth’, because I just can’t see myself existing in such an insular society after the international upbringing I’ve had. HEEEELP!!

    1. Thanks for the comment and boy do I feel your pain! What can I say, you’ve already visited the place and gotten a pretty good idea of how you’ll find it and what you’ll miss. And yes, no doubt you’ll really miss all those things you mentioned once you can no longer do them. We didn’t have family around us in the the UK when we left or in Perth, so have to admit nights out have always been a bit scarce. There’s no way I’d have hired a babysitter over there as I simply wouldn’t trust any of the teenagers I came into contact with and using an agency was hellishly expensive. There are a few nice restaurants around I think, but the cost of eating out was incredibly expensive. In fact, one thing people seem to over look is the price of living there now. Some friends returned from a trip recently (and they’ve been visiting Perth for many years) and they couldn’t believe how expensive it is now. Salaries may be more than here in many cases but what you get for your dollar makes the UK a far cheaper place to live. Of course people already living over there will deny this (as they don’t want to believe it to be true!) but it’s a fact!

      It’s a good thing to give yourself 4 years to figure it out. That’s how long we were there, although the entire last year was admittedly spent planning the very costly return! You never know, you may get there and find you love the very slow pace of life and the beach lifestyle instead of the culture over here… Personally I’m relieved to be home and have the opportunity to do so much more with our time. And even though the summer is questionable at the moment, I could never handle another Perth summer or winter!

      You haven’t said where you’ll be living over there, so hopefully it’ll be close enough to the ‘city’ (and I use that term very loosely!) so that you are at least surrounded by some like-minded people with a similar background. I’m sure if you get on with your in-laws having family around will help out and your kids will enjoy it. All I can say is this. If you get there and then decide after a few years that it’s not right for you, then I wouldn’t beat yourself up about it, accept it’s not right for everyone and come back. There are already too many people over there who aren’t happy with life but either don’t want to admit ‘defeat’ or can’t afford to come back. Keep me posted!

      Rachel πŸ™‚

  15. Hi Rachel,

    loved your blog, and laughed at feeding your son pancakes going round the super market as my kids are aged 8, 6 and 5 and have done this on many many occasions (and of course to those who seem concerned about nutrition on here my kids get plenty of fruit and veg), but now haunted by the notion that I’ll have to pesevere with dodgey trolleys at the other end of the world too- it’s going on my ‘cons’ list.

    The glamour of day to day grind down under sounds exactly like mine here in sunny Scotland but can’t wait to be doing it all in Perth (Secret harbour/Mandurah) πŸ™‚ visa has been granted and just waiting to sell the house. We have been planning a move for some years now so super excited it’s all actually in motion.

    Although it may rain there at least you are guaranteed sun in the summer time- we get 2 weeks of sun in May and that’s our lot here, the rest of the time it’s bucketing down or we’re waist deep in snow- we are avid lovers of the outdoors i.e. camping, fishing, walking, so to be able to do it more than once a year will be fantastic!

    Not looking forward to saying goodbye to my mum (untill the trolley senario she was the only thing on my con list) – we are taking her only grandkids away- but the world’s a smaller place with skype (or so I’m convincing myself), oh and we are leaving a very old dog behind 😦

    And the only way we will be in the 40% minority high tailing it back to the UK is if we get deported… stranger things have happened :O lol. Ooooh and unconcerned with cooking sausages all day I’m gonna get an outdoor pizza oven and sicken my family with them every day (vegetable toppings of course)… how I love my new life πŸ˜€

    Regards, Salina x

    1. Hi Salina
      Thanks for dropping by my blog – I hope the moves goes well and you have a wonderful time in Perth! If you like the outdoors lifestyle you’ll no doubt be very happy. Let me know how it goes!
      Rachel πŸ™‚

  16. Thanks for the great post! I’ve actually gotten state sponsorship to move to WA and chose Perth of course. I’ve lived in Doha, Qatar and Singapore but is originally from the Philippines. So I have actually seen the fast-paced life in Singapore and the more laid-back style in Doha.

    I guess it really does boil down to perspective and what you really want to do in life. Having lived most of my life in a third-world country where taxes are exhorbitant and politicians are one of the most corrupt in the world, a permanent move to Australia seems like a good idea.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m proud of who I am and my roots, just not too proud of my government.

    Having seen the deserts of Qatar and lived through the summers here, I’m sure I can take on the weather there, it couldn’t be worse than 50deg Celsius and a humidity level that makes it difficult to breathe. Also, I grew up in a tropical country so rain and sun is nothing new to me. And the experience of living in Singapore where life is much faster than what i’ve been accustomed to has already taught me how to adapt. So yes, I’m set on moving to Perth.

    My only concern really is whether jobs will be readily available and which suburbs are “safer” to settle in. And if Scottish boyfriend will be happy with the beach life.

  17. My husbands work offered us the opportunity to come to Perth and take up a position that was expected to be for about four year years. I figured why not, the kids are young and i was keen for some travel and another adventure. We have been here for two years now and love our new life, friends, community, primary school etc. Six months of warm sunshine a year, pool in the garden, beautifully maintained parks and gardens, some of the best beaches in the world, I could go on and on. Even though we love it, and even though the job has been offered as permanent we have decided that we will move on in a few years time.

    Our main reasons are; property is seriously expensive to buy, and after tours of local high schools, i can see why everyone I know has puts their kids names down for private schools. Problem with Perth is you really don’t have much chance of getting your kids in to them if they are over 5 or 6 years of age when you apply and you are Atheist! So we will enjoy the sunshine while the kids are young and either go back to the UK or go somewhere else where there is work in the oil and gas industry.
    I miss relatives and wish we could spend more time together, relatives affording flights and being fit to travel is another issue. Because everything is expensive you tend to do the free stuff like picnic in the park or go to the beach. The houses are poorly insulated so even though its not that cold by Scottish standards you feel freezing in the winter here. I go to bed with a jumper on and the kids have electric blankets on their beds. I think the positives to living in Perth are obvious and i don’t mean to be too negative, I wanted to be honest about the negatives. I guess another thing is that we didn’t come here with the intention to settle, it was originally just a 4 year hitch.

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