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Thread: Grass not Greener?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
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    UK
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    193

    Default Grass not Greener?

    I've just returned from an enjoyable 3 weeks in the UK with friends/family over Christmas. Leaving aside the horrors of the flights with an 8 month old, what it did for me was slay a few demons - being from the UK, I constantly compared NZ to the UK and always thought it was generally a better all round place. Being fairly anal, I couldn't help but compare.

    Biggest things I noticed was that:-

    -Everything in the UK seems so small - houses, gardens, roads so narrow, towns, shopping centres, car parks.
    -UK town centres - even Windsor and Maidenhead - are going the dogs very quickly. Shops being replaced by incessant pound shops, cash for gold, kebab shops, second hand shops and the flow of bookies. I only left Maidenhead in June 2011, and there's THREE new bookies opened in the town centre alone!
    -The food in UK cafes is utterly disgusting
    -UK beer - whilst there's the odd nice pub - is generally utterly dreadful compared to NZ.
    -The very dark nights (I know it's winter), but from 4pm were pretty depressing.
    -Everything was dead in the winter - trees, bushes etc. - that surprised me.
    -I was under the impression (or had convinced myself) that food in the UK and NZ was pretty much the same and similar prices; it's not. I was shocked how incredibly cheap UK food was and with the selection, but also even more surprised to find that some deli purchases - even from Waitrose - were poorer in comparison to New World.
    -The streets seemed filthy. Every other paving slab in Watford was covered in about 5 discarded gums.


    Prior to the trip, I always thought "lifestyle" was just something people made up - and in reality, unless you spent all your days tramping or mountain climbing (not my favourite pasttimes), you just lived in a lesser version of the UK in NZ. Trip back made me realise - that's absolutely not the case.....

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
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    Default

    Welcome back.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Top of the South!
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    Default

    Emigrating to a new country, is a process that requires different levels of adjustment for different people. My wife was very much comparing NZ to her home country, for the first three years of being here. It took a trip back to make her understand that, in fact we have things pretty good here.

  4. #4
    Manks's Avatar
    Manks is offline Serial procrastinator and general busybody
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    UK->CT, USA->Wellington, NZ
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    Default

    Mr Manks went back to the UK for a visit in November. I think he'd pretty much concur with your observations

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Blenheim
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    Default

    I am not from the UK, but had exactly the same feeling about the narrow streets when I went back to Germany (and it hasn't changed in the three years I have been back since....), we used to live in a small-ish town and I always thought that our street / area was open and wide, but didn't feel like that at all when I drove past the old house.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    NZ (Auckland; via Canada)
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    Default

    Welcome HOME.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    San Francisco to Auckland
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    626

    Default

    Glad you had this situation occur for you. It is nice to know that you are home again.

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