25 October 2015

REAL-izations

I continue to be asked if I am excited about moving to Scotland.  Of course, in general, I am.  But, there are so many things to do, so many details to manage.  Most of the time I have been thinking what is the next step?  What task needs completing next?  I realized yesterday that many of these next steps are fun things!  What will we do in Chicago?  Where will we eat?  Then, once in Scotland, prior to Pat starting work, what will we do?  Where will we go? Who will we see?  So, if asked today if I am excited, I can say "Yes!  Yes, I am!"

Another realization yesterday occurred in the evening just before heading home from our last night out with friends in Quincy.  We have had a few farewell parties over the last several weeks with different groups of friends and family.  We have also had a lot of final events.  Many of these times we have been able to say, "we might see you again;" "we will be in town a few more weeks," etc.  Last night--none of that.  We leave Quincy tomorrow.  We will not see these folks again any time soon.  Reality check, a sad one.

Enough melancholy!  

On the other hand...As we make our final preparations and experience these final events, everyone else seems to realize also that they will not see us again for a long while if at all.  As a result, their final words at times go beyond just "see you later" or "good luck."  At times their words have been quite touching.  At times, these very touching words have come from unexpected places.  In alll cases, these touching words make our hearts smile.  As we depart for Scotland--a return home for Pat; a new adventure for me--make no mistake, we will look back fondly on our time in Quincy.

22 October 2015

The Final Mad Rush

It would seem the service my immigration attorney provided was worth the money paid as was the payment for expedited service. The turn-around time from the delivery of my documents to Sheffield to the email confirmation that a decision had been made was seven days.  !!!  We were thinking two weeks would be fast. Whatever!  It took two more days to arrive at our home which set in motion our final steps:

21 October: book our travel arrangements.
22 October: movers pick up all our stuff for the overseas shipment.
23-24 October: final garage sales/trips to the thrift store.
26-29 October: family and friends time in Chapin and Jacksonville.
30 October - 1 November: shopping, food and drink in Chicago.
2 November: fly to Scotland.
3 November: arrive in Scotland, exhausted, but excited.

Of course, there are a plethora of other details to address along the way, including all the typical tasks of moving house.  We should also have some time for a little more fun in Quincy before we go--a few more meals at our favorite restaurants and a Halloween-themed bar crawl for sure.  

Anyway, to you, my readers, this means that much more interesting content is coming very soon...

15 October 2015

this is hapPENING!!


The house is a disaster! And, we are living out of boxes...finally!  The end of all the preparations is in sight.  The day after my biometric appointment last week, we received the lease on our flat in Aberdeen to sign.  After signing and copying, we were able to include it with all the other documents and send them to Sheffield, England to be evaluated.  Of course, I tracked the package and it was delivered Monday. Yesterday, I received an email saying it was officially received and being processed.  Hopefully, I will receive a confirmation email within two weeks and my passport and documents will arrive soon after.  At that point we can book our travel arrangements.

Now, we pack our stuff and prepare it for the five to ten week shipment across the pond.  We are not eating from paper plates yet, but that is just a few days away.  Other than that, we finish work tomorrow and we are planning a lot of family and friends time over the next two weeks.  We are not planning much beyond that.


07 October 2015

Inching Closer...

Tomorrow, we go to St Louis for my biometrics appointment--fingerprints and photo.  After that and after we receive our lease to sign--coming any day--we can submit all of my documents. They will travel to Sheffield, England for review.  Wtih my solicitor's supporting documents and the priority service for which we paid, I expect this to go quickly, but it could take up to four weeks for them to return everything.

Whenever that happens, it will be a sprint to get to Aberdeen. We will book all our planes, trains, and automobiles and warn all the Scots that we are on our way, finalizing details here as quickly as possible.  However, we will surely spend a little time with my family and then two or three days in Chicago before we fly away.

As we hope for a two-week turn-around...we have one more full week of work.  As soon as the documents are sorted, we will seek answers to all our packing and shipping questions, prepare all our stuff, and sell or discard what we have left.  We may be in Quincy for a while longer than planned and Pat may have a longer holiday between jobs than expected. Regardless, we also continue to enjoy our remaining time in the Quincy area, planning several dinners out and a few more parties.