As many, many people now know, we are moving back to Canada. After 8 great years with Microsoft, I have decided to take on a new exciting role with a Canadian company.
We have spent 2 years in the UK, and have loved it. As an experience, it has exceeded my expectations on almost every level. I am very grateful to have had the opportunity. It has changed my perspective on so many things.
And of course, this has kicked off a whirlwind of activity and a task list the size of my arm. The nice thing is that we will not be going through the house challenge that we went through when we moved to the UK – trying to figure out what should come from our 3,500 square foot home, 200X90 foot yard and huge double garage (and garden shed) to our 2,000 square foot (maybe 1600!) townhouse that costs an insane amount of money each month. In this case packing will be different, the instructions to the movers will be a simple directional point to the house and one phrase ‘pack everything’.
I am sitting in the lounge in Toronto after completing a whirlwind house hunt and I have a few reflections:
- I do not miss fast food. I drove down highway 7 in Toronto and passed more fast food restaurants than I have seen in 2 years in the UK. It is kind of sad. Where has the chef gone?
- North American consumerism is a shocking contrast to England. In England, it is small shops (that seem to open and close at the whim of their proprieters) in quaint little buildings that have been around for hundreds of years. Driving in Toronto it is all new and business malls as far as the eye can see …. It bombards the senses.
- I did stop for a 7-11 coke slush (or whatever they are called – crushed ice freezie thing). I really enjoyed that. I also had a big breakfast with proper streaky bacon at Wimpeys this morning (after a 7K run and 5K bike in the gym). I enjoyed that too!
- It is so wide open. Big highways. My goodness – how your perspective changes.
- No restaurant in Canada will ever seem expensive to me again. After you have paid in euros or the pound, everything in North America seems CHEAP. $45 CDN filet? A bargain!
And last but not least, it will be good to reconnect with so many friends and family. Thanks for all the well wishes. See you soon!