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The Big Move

I would consider myself notable in my¬†absence, given I haven’t written a blog post of any description in quite a period of time. I’ll explain here why.

About a year ago, my wife and I made the decision to leave Ireland permanently. Our decision was based primarily on being closer to her family (that is to say, on mainland Europe) and with the knowledge that we were and are getting ever closer to starting our own family, which neither of us felt the urge to do in Ireland. Ireland, for all it’s positives, is an expensive country to do anything. Buying a house was (and still is) expensive. Having a child is expensive. Hell, going for a coffee is expensive. So we yearned for a certain quality of life that Ireland could no longer afford us. The decision was made, we discussed it with our parents between August and September last year (2010) and set in motion the steps that would be required to make the move. From the off, we had decided France was the place to go. We knew a number of people there, which gave us the advantage of having a base and a community with whom to start. We had met there, so there were nostalgic reasons. We spoke the language, always an advantage. And it was convenient enough for both families to come and visit us, or vice-versa. We settled on Quimper in Brittany as that was where we knew the most people and it gave us the best opportunity of hitting the ground running. I had the great advantage of discussing our decision with my employers, Arekibo, just after Christmas 2010, who offered to support our move with the ability to continue to work for them from abroad. This support was super and in the end, has actually proven invaluable. Without it, I don’t think we could have moved. The nature of my work has to change slightly, but that’s to be expected, given I won’t be in a position to meet clients, etc., from another country. I look forward to the challenge and others have done it before, so it’s just a matter of self-discipline.

And so, here we are. I’m on a train from Paris to Quimper, having arrived in from Shannon this morning. And we now live in France. I will take the opportunity of the 5 hour train journey to fill in some of the blanks over the past couple of months. It’s all been good, exciting and progressive!

Will I miss Ireland? Definitely. Will I miss my family? Of course. But the economy (which was not originally a deciding factor for us, but by the end was certainly a contributing factor) has encouraged us to believe we made the right decision. I had started to become entrenched in the Irish development scene, attending Pub Standards and Web Summits, speaking at Refresh, etc., so I’ll miss that. But Eamon Leonard pointed at one of the attendees of Pub Standards and explained that he had come to Ireland based on his contacts on Twitter and was working from having stepped off the plane, so I suppose it’s up to me to keep those lines of contact open! I’ll also be back to visit more often than you might think, so it’s not the end…

It’s really just the beginning.