It is strange...

I was born in Worcester, and have lived in Birmingham, Chalfont St Peter, Slough, London, Harlow, Newcastle Under Lyme, and Bracknell. I think that is it. I may have missed some. The idea of moving is always a challenge but at no point in my life did I ever consider that there may be some reason I could not simply move. The hassle was renting or buying somewhere, and that was basically it, after getting a job (which usually came first).

For me the idea of moving to say, Glasgow, or Cardiff, or anywhere else in the UK all fell in to the same category. Of course I could. It was obvious.

To be honest, it only occurred to me, maybe 20 years ago, I could move somewhere else, when a friend moved to Finland. The EU has opened things up, and yes, until recently, I would have said that it was obvious I could do the same, or Germany or France or whatever. I assumed the language issues, cultural differences, and availability of Marmite would be my only issues really.

I always assumed moving to US or Canada or some other place would be harder and need a visa and becoming a national - emigrating, basically. I have skills and money so they would be possible, but would be harder, and I always assumed that.

Over the last year I realise some of these assumptions are not as clear cut.

  • Moving to US? Why the fuck would I right now? Why would anyone?
  • Moving to Canada? Interesting idea - but clearly needing some work, visa, money, something.
  • Moving to mainland EU? Well, yes, or maybe no - with brexit that could break once I have moved.
  • Moving to Edinburgh? I always assumed yes, but what if Scottish independence was to happen?

How long before moving to the other side of Bracknell needs a visa?

What is the world coming to?


  1. > How long before moving to the other side of Bracknell needs a visa?

    One of Ascot's top 10 priorities, I should have thought!

  2. On the plus side, if you did move to Edinburgh, I'd definitely buy you a beer.

  3. I would say come join me in Australia (I moved out in November last year) but they have so much more draconian surveillance laws than the UK.

    The culture is wonderful, the people on the street are great. The government... hmmm

    New Zealand might be an idea? The visa system there is pretty easy and there's less stuff trying to kill you

  4. See the Fractured Europe series by Dave Hutchinson, in which moving from the outskirts of Potsdam to the city centre needs a visa.

  5. Regarding Canada. The grass isn't always greener on the other side ;)

  6. Come and join me in the Free Republic of Elkstones

    You can me Minister for Whisky

    Bring the Internets with you...

  7. I decided long ago to get across before Scotland closes the border.

    Elkstones is a good place, know the area well. Not far, but far enough, from Newcastle under Lyme.

  8. What is Sweden like? A liberal democracy, or not?

    1. I would not want to live there today, they have gone nuts

  9. Personally, having spent a while in various countries, the visa paperwork never seemed like the biggest barrier - the language and culture, even with countries where I speak the native language to some extent (growing up with a translator mother), posed more of an obstacle than the need to spend some time and money getting legal paperwork - after all, you need that for buying/selling a house too. Could I be happy living in the US or Canada? Yes (the US government may not be perfect, but there's far more protection against that than we have in the UK, with insane proposals like the £2m fine for having a blog not registered with Ofcom). Germany or France? Forget it.

  10. There's always the Republic of Ireland. Not far away, not even properly foreign (once you've got used to speed limits in km/h, and 'football' being very different).

    Although I've heard bad stories about rural broadband - very different from the sheer joy that is BT Openreach in the UK.


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