First week in exile

Fortunately, when you move country there is too much to do at the beginning for you to have the time to be too depressed.

On Wednesday Rob was proven right: the agency was taking on new employees more or less indiscriminately and immediately. I re-registered with my old health insurance company; sent the Scottish banknotes to Tommy; rebegan doing French Duolingo lessons; even played a (winning) online go game.

On Thursday I got an ‘extract’ from my doctor’s documentation for the employer-to-be’s one, noticing my dentist (who used to sit next door) had retired in 2013. At Rob’s bar I met Peeweet, then surprisingly also my roommate, after which I rebegan Swedish Duolingo lessons – and finding out Norwegian Bokmål was already in beta started that one.

On Friday I had the ‘initial check-up’ (luckily the doc didn’t notice my footdrop), had a supper with Rob during my first visit to his new house on Woodless Street; later in his bar rebegan processing my old photos, starting with St Andrews 2010 – partly, I have to admit, because the WiFi connection in the far room was worse than pathetic.

I had been afraid the weekend would drag on, but after rebeginning my physical exercises on Saturday I had a lot to do on the laptop, including writing a letter to British Telecom to terminate the Internet contract for my former Scottish abode. The unpleasant thing was that my roommate started watching a film each night before going to sleep. Naturally I can’t fall asleep before these end. Ah well, I won’t be there for long.

On Sunday I finally had a shower (the hostel is so cheap the cubicles don’t even have curtains, and my roommate had advised me to shower in the morning, as later on I might not get hot water); before leaving for the bar I rearranged my possessions, my roommate having eventually emptied one of the two bedside tables in the room.

And on Monday the agency called to say they’d arranged an induction for me for Wednesday.

It wasn’t as bad as I’d expected, not by a long shot. Nevertheless, exiled, lonely and depressed I was. I sent to Tommy several emails with a PS reading “I miss you”.



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