Exactly 10 years ago we had landed in London to start this crazy adventure! It is so scary that 10 years have already gone by. I still remember our first week’s daily “meetings” in Leicester’s Square Burger King like it wasn’t that long ago.
If you have moved to a different country then you will know it is not an easy feat. It has been quite an emotional journey.
On our first few days in London we would sit down in Burger King at the end of the day to go through the highs and lows of the day. That kept us grounded and helped overcome the fear of not succeeding. I would also call my grandmother to check in and to let her know that we had survived another day in London.
Those were difficult times but together we got through all the challenges. Soon we settled down and started exploring our new city and other UK cities. We also planned our first holidays to go back to Portugal.
Job and house hunting was very different from what we expected. I would say a lot more challenging. Thankfully it took us only about a month to get our first jobs which was not too bad. But they weren’t great ones. We moved into our first long-term room after about three weeks and shared the flat with a great guy.
We lived in Willesden Green. My first job was at Itsu in St. Johns Wood selling sushi and my boyfriend’s first job was at Nero in Regent Street. As you can see nothing too fancy.
The next jobs popped up soon enough which allowed us to have some peace of mind and a little more money in the bank. I was a temp in a sales team selling plane parts and my boyfriend started working for Cineworld.
Our first trip back home was in September 2008 and by then we already had so many experiences to talk about with friends and family.
After that we only moved house twice and in 2013 we finally moved on from all the house sharing madness. I changed jobs quite often and even had the guts to start over in a new industry about 5 years ago. My boyfriend changed jobs once and is now working close to home too.
London has offered us so much over the years. Yes, the weather is pretty crap but the opportunities in this city are something else. We have learned so much, met some incredible people and visited places we had never even heard of before.
We truly discovered our love for travelling and went on a few trips over these last 10 years.
2008 – Portugal twice
2009 – Portugal four times, one of those Madeira and Porto Santo
2010 – Portugal three times and Nice
2011 – Portugal twice, Sri Lanka and Menorca
2012 – Portugal three times and Menorca
2013 – Portugal three times and Greece (Athens, Milos, Santorini and Mykonos)
2014 – Portugal twice, Amsterdam, Ibiza and Belgium
2015 – Portugal twice, Switzerland, Villefranche-sur-mer, Paris and Menorca
2016 – Portugal three times and Crete (Greece)
2017 – Portugal twice, Menorca, Copenhagen, Lanzarote, Furteventura and Amsterdam
2018 – Currently in Portugal
Not sure if I have missed any trips but I could count 49 trips in our first 10 years in London which averages about 5 holidays a year. Not too bad!