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Interior Highways Life In Eire Moving Abroad

Day Two of An Overseas Job (and The Rest of The Day’s News)

Well today was a big improvement on yesterday, both practically and emotionally. The best news of all was that we got a place to live(!)

In the space of 24hrs Aoife looked at a place on the inner north, facetime’d me a squiz, and managed all the leasing and paperwork while I worked up here in Dublin. A monster effort from her that paid off big time. Photos / videos to follow soon!

On the work front, it was better today spending a full day at work here. I was able to become more familiar with the processes and how a day plays out with the Dublin lads. A little bit of craic thrown in there too. I’ll be heading back down to Cork tomorrow, whereby we will get the keys and then move in over the weekend. I’ll then come back up Monday to Dublin, work the week, then head back down again thereafter.

Getting the keys will be a big boost for us no doubt, as finding a place is by far the biggest challenge the countries’ renters face. Followed closely by finding an affordable place.

Hopefully with a decent night’s sleep in the industrial complex, and provided no security alarms go off again during the night, I’ll be back to report on the move in over the course of the weekend. Until then…

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Interior Highways Life In Eire Moving Abroad

Day One of An Overseas Job

Today was a frosty start—literally. More snow had fallen last night than we’ve seen since being here. Cars and the countryside were an inch or two thick with it, which made getting to the train a bit slow going, and I had to catch the next one to Dublin.

Once here one of the lads picked me up and it was hitting the ground running on arrival with training.

Later on my trainer, Ian, and I drove around the corner to the uniform shop and picked me up some gear. I then drove the van around to Lidl and just couldn’t make the hill start without stalling it. Geez, talk about embarrassing. It’s been more than ten years since I’ve driven a stick and it showed right then and there! Given that 95% of vehicles here are manual I’m going to have to upgrade my license quick smart. Irrespective of if we need to get a car I would still like to get it and finally put THAT training to bed. Life has been so insanely busy recently that essential life stuff like that has repeatedly taken a back seat for us both.

Coming back to the accomodation, which is above the office, I felt pretty weird and lonely. I’m not gonna lie. I mean, it could be the fact that I’m eating a chicken tikka masala freezer meal (quality as expected) on my own in a flat above a warehouse in the middle of an industrial estate. I’d say a good dose of missing familiar faces and voices too. Something just feels a bit weird and sad though. It’s like an organ transplant and I’m the organ.

I was waiting for when I’d feel something like this; displaced or questioning motives etc. etc. Sure it will take time to get in the groove of things here, and we’re getting closer to finding a place to rent, but something about full time work has always felt like a prison to me. Like the cars, 95% of work here is full time. I’m not ungrateful for the job and the opportunity, quite the contrary, but I’d be lying if I didn’t acknowledge the need for art and life in the picture there too.

The tricky thing for an artistic type (which I believe both of us are) is that life can constantly feel like a procedural flowchart of either dead ends or impossible prerequisites. Chicken and eggs scenarios, and that’s even before getting to negative thinking in terms of lack or scarcity. It is hard no matter what you do. I know graphic designers, choreographers, instrumentalists, you name it and it’s the same for them. Everyone has to, or has done more than their fair share of, jobs that pay the bills. I think it’s fair to say we’re not lazy. It’s not that we don’t want to work full time. We want to work ceaselessly outside of a prison of time.

Sure, I’m generalising again here, that most people do something they don’t want to do, or at best have their great days and not great days at work. I also don’t know anyone who’s ever had a 10/10 first day at work.

Explaining it to Aoife earlier I just said that it feels like time is slipping through my fingers. I don’t think you necessarily have to be a creative professional to feel that on your first day, or any given day, at work. I guess my gist here is that we think Ireland should adopt the four-day week and/or six-hour workday too(!) It sounds like a good idea right? Do we have to strike and protest like the French? How can we make this happen? Let’s think it over by another cup of tea…

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Life In Eire Moving Abroad

One Down!

Great news team, yours truly has just scored a J-O-B!

I’ll be working with an AV Company called AVC, who are a nationwide supplier of audio visual equipment and services to the predominantly corporate events world here. I’ll be their warehouse manager, organising all gear returns and dispatches, maintenance and inventory systems. It’s out by the Cork airport, Mon-Fri, 8-5. A couple of other Tech Managers have put me on their lists for sound work around town too, so I might yet get the odd call to mix some bands. Thank you so much for all your prayers 🙏 they worked a treat! We’re very grateful ⭐️🕺👌

Aoife has not one but two interviews tomorrow, and we have a viewing at a flat in the afternoon, so keep ‘em coming! Til more news, stay classy San Diego ❤️

P.s. We trust you got the rain we sent you. Hope it didn’t arrive all in one sweep… 😂

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Life In Eire Moving Abroad

An Update From Ireland

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…

The Wins

  • 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.

The Challenges

  • 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!

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Ireland Adventures

More Vital Street Photojournalism

Winter mornings here are basically this
Um.. Wot?
“Ye carnt bring ye hars n boogie in’t te tuhnnel!
(tiss incloodes chariots an th’sart)”
Sloppy Guiseppe? Isn’t that the creepy guy from Eurotrip?
“Ahh mi scusi”
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Ireland Adventures Moving Abroad

Visual Recap of Week 3

Walking around Sunday’s Well
Near UCC
UCC
Glucksman Art Gallery
Basically a friggin‘ Monet
Bunsen’s double cheeseburger
Wild holly bush
Overnight at Blarney Woollen Mills Hotel for Aoife’s birthday
Happy birthday madam! Xoxo
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Ireland Adventures Moving Abroad

Around Our New City

We’ve been here in Ireland for two and a half weeks (in Cork the entire time) and it’s safe to say we’re completely smitten! We’ve been blessed with blue skies as well as some unseasonal sunshine however as the day closes in, the temperature drops really quickly and gifts us with some of the most beautiful wintry sunsets conceivable (I’m hopeful we might get snow based on the extra warm days).

Dreamy and chilly, believe me

We are generally getting around either on public transport (double decker buses that give us a bird’s eye view of charming narrow streets and gorgeous houses). We’re also walking a lot and, as always, it’s my preferred way to discover a new place. I’ll put it out there now: Cork begs to be enjoyed and there’s so much to enjoy. We basically stop every half a block to bookmark places and take pictures.

Around Cork City and a walk we did recently on an old railway line converted to public space

Amongst our visits to recruiters, we’ve also made our way to UCC (University College Cork) and soaked up some of the lush campus. I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves — it’s about 25 minutes walk from the city centre.

Needless to say, we’ll be back and we’re looking forward to tackling one of the many walks that circuit around the university as well as checking out the gallery Simon is pictured on the other side of above

Finally, we’re still loving all of the street art and sculptures dotted everywhere — here are some gems from the last few days or so. Let me say it again: we love it here and are thrilled to be sharing this special place with you, too.

Technically not street art but it was on the side of a building…
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Check This Out

Getting Into The Chill Of Things

Tis’ cold to be sure, but we are nevertheless head-down arse-up and hot on the trail of jobs. Here’s a delightful winter post in the meantime…

(yeah trust me, it’s worthwhile)


https://mymodernmet.com/simon-beck-snow-drawings/

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Interior Highways

I. Interesting, rad and enjoyable things

One aim I have for this year is to be better at sharing things and so I’m aiming to use this site for building a compendium of recommendations. Prior to now I’d used sporadic WhatsApp/FB messages with friends and loved ones to share things in a manner inarguably sloppy, sporadic and somewhat difficult to process. For a long time I’d thought about properly sorting things into emails however I’m actually the worst at this so moving forward, I’m going to try and write these posts and then there’s easy hyperlinks too!

Without further ado, some recent things that are worthwhile sharing:

  1. To start, this undeniably enjoyable street art from our new city located on the South Mall, Parnell Place. Not sure of the connection Alf Stewart has with Cork but holy cow, anything that immortalises one of my favourite ‘Strayan ockerisms is a bloody winner. Here’s a fun response from the icon himself, too! On the whole, the Cork streets are home to mesmerising art pieces with the standout for me the Irish historical figures located on Kyle Street.
  1. The first book I’ve read in 2020 is the much-acclaimed Michelle Obama memoir Becoming*. I’d heard that Becoming was genuinely extraordinary writing however I was completely unprepared for how engrossing the narrative structure is and how effectively the key motifs around education, economics, structural segregation, community, rhetoric and policy is communicated. I can’t recommend this highly enough, not least with regard to relevance around how subsequent USA administrations are managing civic issues both on a federal and international level. Also, an additional comment that Obama’s expertise is formidable – prior to reading this memoir, my understanding of her experience was limited to her work in law – with her work post-FLOTUS a continued pursuit of essential social change that shows genuine leadership.undefined
  1. Sincere thanks to my rad brother-in-law Andrew for alerting me to this interview with Andrew Scott, Irish actor extraordinaire, on the famed podcast How To Fail with Elizabeth Day. This episode is a stand-out and kicks off a new season of How To Fail, with this conversation with this hallowed actor an all-round treat and I’ll also take the opportunity to highlight a slightly different interview here with some of his lesser-known fans, too… A stat that’s additionally worth sharing: Scott’s cult character on Fleabag Season 2 has spiked sales in Marks & Spencer canned G&T.
  1. I genuinely love grocery shopping and when I’m somewhere new, supermarkets and chemists/pharmacies are my ideal place for an excursion, especially when this involves sourcing snacks, etc.: enter, Deliciously Ella Salted Caramel Cups. These are a winner, albeit a treat in every sense of the word as they are a bit ‘spenny. More generally, we are actively acquainting ourselves with supermarkets in Ireland (so far our favourite is Dunnes Stores, in particular the Bishopstown location where Simon picked up a cashmere beanie from!!!) and subsequently getting amongst brands and treats not available in Australia. Last night we tried the infamous Salted Caramel Cups. Needless to say I’m thinking about them right now and they were an outstanding pre-dinner-walking-home-from-Tesco snack. Honourable mention here to this local brand, Cali Cali Foods, for their chipotle hot sauce as well – more of a salsa-y relish than a hot sauce and deliciously smoky, too – we’ve been enjoying this with loads of meals!

Finally, our hearts are heavy with the bushfires and national emergency happening in Australia. This crisis keeps evolving and we are trying to stay informed with regards to how we can all be responsive on a community support level as well as mobilise as citizens. One component is ensuring that all of our voices are heard so that action is taken on localised and national fronts for both recovery and structural changes plus funding to environmental and preventative policies are made. In terms of the scope of damage and the extent of the fires, this photo essay here puts into perspective that this crisis did not happen in the space of days – ordinary people, emergency services and journalists have been engaged with this for months now.

*One last note, my preferred place to buy secondhand books online is Better World Books. Not only is their selection stellar, they donate to world literacy programs plus they donate books, and their work saves books from becoming landfill (they reuse, repurpose and recycle). I will note that books can take a little while to arrive however it’s worth it – check them out!

Categories
Ireland Adventures Moving Abroad

Brrrr….

This morning Quinn finally took us for a walk down to Blackrock castle as the sky cleared. Well, I say morning. It was about noon by the time we returned back home to Rob’s. It’ll take us some time yet to get adjusted to the 9am sunrises and 4pm sunsets.

Quinn is a golden retriever–poodle–horse about about 4 years old. She just about trampled a poor lady to death who was power walking in the opposite direction. “JEAYSUS!” the woman exclaimed. Thankfully I had enough leash to yank her in the other direction. That was my adrenaline fix for today.

In other news, the precise day last week that I attempted to put Euros onto our Travelex card the company was hacked and its website and app have been down since. According to the chap I recently spoke to in the Phillipines they are having to rebuild their entire security system.

We had planned to use this as an interim solution until we set up Irish/Euro bank accounts, but it seems we’ll just continue to use our Aussie cards (albeit with the crappier exchange rate) until our bank cards arrive next week. So far we’ve signed up with N26, which is some new fandangled online bank. Aoife’s account is already created, using her EU passport, and her card is on the way, but I’ve had no end of being messed around by them and their app. I think it just doesn’t like Aussies…

Also, some of the local entertainment thus far:

Setting a ‘Secret Question’ on the Leap Card website for our account (similar to Go Card or Opal Card back home). The question reads, “What is the name of a college you applied to but didn’t get admitted”.
An example of a perfectly legitimate park here
Here’s a mannequin sitting exactly as my brother does. Slightly constipated looking.
Yes, yes, and yes!