Have you ever had the desire to put the life you have on hold for a little while? Do you feel like work defines you to the point that you don’t know where work ends and your life begins?Well I felt like that a bit, combined with turning 30, I had an overwhelming feeling to shake things up and embark upon a life break. We work so hard to build a life that is comfortable and I know as a teacher I’m not alone in the pressures I feel to get to the bottom of that never-ending list when I know deep down it’s impossible! Don’t get me wrong I love my job and the joy it brings me but I’m more than my job right?!
So here I am taking a break from my normal life to try to remember what my ambitions and goals are and ultimately who I am without my profession or anything else defining my every move. We all need some headspace now and again.
With UK citizens entitled to an Australian visa up until the age of 31 and the weather being a dam sight better than the UK, I’d often day dream what life could be like there. With both mine and my boyfriend’s jobs on the skills shortage list, it made sense to explore Australia further and here we are at the start of our year long adventure.
It’s not been easy living in limbo before coming over here. If you asked me if I’d go back a few months and do it all over again I’d probably say no but it’s let me do a lot of soul-searching to realise what’s important in my life.
Having the chance to have the 1 year visa is a really fortunate position to be in. I don’t think I’d have the guts to up and emigrate for real nor do I think I’d want to as there’s so much you realise you’ve yet to explore in your own country and continent. It’s just nice to have a ‘play’ for a while, dip your toe in the water for the experience.
It’s been all systems go since we got to Brisbane after a few days chilling out in Sydney. We did our first Airbnb in someone’s spare room which was fine but a week was probably far too long. Nevertheless it was a cost-effective way of doing things.
I was thrown into the deep end, 3 days after arriving, teaching classes in a challenging school that was over an hour away by public transport. In hindsight, giving myself some time to settle into Brisbane may have been a better idea as I didn’t actually end up taking the job.
We spent 2 full days looking for flats and ended up getting the only furnished flat in the block we now live in by walking in by chance to see if there were any flats available. Before that though, we booked into what has to be the grottiest hostel I think I’ve ever stayed in. Mouldy wooden walls, dirty kitchen facilities, see through blind! It was cheap but certainly not cheerful.
Gavin got a job as a quantity surveyor working for the contractor who is rolling out the Internet in the Brisbane area and started this week which is fab!
I am starting on a 3 week contract role in a state secondary school in the city next week which I’m really excited about learning about the similarities and differences of the Australian Home Economics curriculum to ours in Scotland. The only thing that’s getting me down at the moment is that the schools are set for a two week holiday so I’m looking for some temp work in that time as I actually can’t bare nor can I afford to be sitting about doing nothing (even though our new rooftop pool is tempting)!
Also, from what I’ve learned already, Home Economics is not as sought after over here in the city areas, more so in remote or rural locations. Supply teaching is something I’d like to try too but I’ll just need to wait and see what happens job wise longer term.
The weather and the free time we have together makes everything worth it. That chance to plan ahead because you know the weather is going to be good, is priceless. There’s a lot of ground we want to cover and we’ve hardly done anything yet!