We’ve now been in Ireland for five weeks and it’s definitely a case of blinking then time flying by.
We’ve really settled into our set up phase now with this basically involving hours at our computers, visiting recruiters and drinking a million plus cups of tea e’ry day. We’re also hard at work meeting people in our respective as well as crossover industries with some connections being made through friends here. There’s also been meetings of happenstance through coffee shops, rad record stores and even the Cork City tourist office (hey, Tony!). Irish people are incredibly kind and every time I leave Simon to pop into Tesco/Lidl/Marks & Spencers, by the time I emerge he’s chatting with a new friend who’s parked up with him on a bench watching the world go by.
Some other updates because it’s worth sharing the nuts and bolts of getting set up here with the realities of challenges as well as other localised things affecting progress…
- Simon’s residency permit – We were so fortunate and Simon was granted his residency permit on our third day in Ireland with a completely unrestricted Stamp 4 that means he can work, we can travel and the permit is until 2023. We’re genuinely so fortunate in this regard because we know from the Australian side that this can be so difficult no matter where you’re trying to move and we’re also very privileged (whether because we’re married, we don’t know) to have been able to get this permission simply and quickly. Bottom line: this is genuinely amazing news!
- Corcaigh – We love, love, love Cork and it’s suiting us really well so far! There’s been some snow the last couple of days (not enough to stick!) and all in all, it’s dreamy! We know we’re in the right place for us and all things considered it’s a huge win to be loving our surrounds.
- Good people – We have a lot of support both near and far that is helping with the transition especially when we’re chained to our keyboards! Job applications in particular are a real mental game of both odds playing and persisting in the face of radio silence and/or rejection. Keeping our chins up, support from everyone all over the world and chocolate from Lidl helps as a discretionary desk treat.
- Winter sickness – This started with me getting a nasty cold a couple of weeks ago and now Simon has succumbed to it as well. He’s had a decidedly yucky five days of it and finally made it out of the house today. Hooray! Three boxes of tissues later…
- Political unpredictabilities – Ireland had a general election over the weekend and between this and Brexit the weekend before (things aren’t happening by halves!) it’s interesting to see as well as experience the localised effects. One of the main ones is a bit of a pause in the hiring market while companies wait for the Brexit dust to settle. Watch this space and keep your fingers crossed we get jobs soon!
- General life admin, i.e. bureaucracy in all its forms — all this to say, while we had a win with the Residency Permit it’s the PPSN cards that are taking their time. These are a cross between Medicare cards and tax file numbers except they’re an official photo ID as well. We are trying to get in to get an appointment for these and have experienced some literally very challenging misdirections in our course of getting to the appointment stage. It goes without saying that adulting in its life admin form is not fun for anyone no matter where in the world you are. Further comments on this: we are counting our blessings, crossing fingers and toes that next week this is sorted, and ultimately, keeping calm, like.
We’ll have some more updates soon from our verdant neck of the woods!