Cat · Moving · Visa

A Change in Scope and the BIG MOVE!

Old versus New – A Change in Scope
The original intention of this blog was for my anticipated move to Istanbul to teach English. That didn’t exactly happen as I planned. I ended up getting a job in pharma advertising and I am still with that company 3+ years later. I didn’t want to create a brand new blog as I believe even my posts from a few years ago show how my life has evolved.

Before the BIG MOVE
My move to Europe had been discussed for quite a long time but logistically wasn’t given the go-ahead until a few months ago. As soon as I got the go-ahead I sprinted into action researching all of the things I will need to do before moving across the Atlantic. My first thought was what I would do with my kitten, Isabelle. My parents have a cat as well that doesn’t exactly see eye-to-eye with Isabelle so I knew that would only be a temporary solution at-best. Isabelle is confined to the guest bedroom but thankfully my family is good about visiting her often. She is so very friendly and fun to be around and I want her with me always!
I got right to work applying for a UK bank (I chose Barclays) online – but I had to get my documents certified so I didn’t get the application in till I got to London. It takes about 7-10 working days for the bank to post a decision about your acct. I should have mine in the next couple of days!
The VISA process was fairly simple – my employer had to provide documentation supporting my move to the UK and I had to complete an online application, a biometric evaluation (taking fingerprints at a local government office – appt required), and submitting all of the documents with my passport and a picture to the border agency. The picture had to be with no smiling – I look ridiculous. Almost borderline depressed to be honest – I am much more of a smiling-type.
I received my visa extremely quickly – it took like a week via priority mail. It costs a bit more but definitely worth it!
I also was set-up with temporary housing through my company which is definitely extremely helpful – it’s definitely a bit tough trying to find a flat. I did a bit of looking before heading over through Gumtree and SpareRoom. I would advise learning more about the areas before you come over but to be honest, I found that I learned the most by just being here and walking around. And walking around. And Walking, walking, walking…you got it.
Saying Goodbye almost deserves it’s own post. I felt as if I had a manifest destiny – yet this time moving East. That doesn’t mean I wasn’t in a state of stress and sadness for the last month in the states. Everytime I would see someone from my gym instructor to friends I would think, “is this the last time I will see them?” There was a sense that I was either dying or going off to war versus becoming an expat in a country a mere 6+ hours by plane away. I wanted to be moved already so that I could focus on my new residence and visiting back home versus leaving everyone behind.
After several farewell parties and packing (and repacking quite a number of times) I was ready to go. My aunt and uncle thankfully were also visiting the UK and took over a suitcase for me. In total I moved three suitcases, mini carry-on bag and computer bag (which looks purse-like) to the UK. Everything else was moved into storage (thank you, parents for letting me use yours)!
Below is my departing flowers/Corona’s from the colleagues from the states. I definitely miss them!!

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