As with anything in life, it begins with an idea. It’s a simple idea, which, in this case, is “I think I’ll move to Australia”. Yes, it’s a simple idea but it’s also a very big one. It is a very big move. One that for some time was too big for us. We felt Australia was just too far removed from the rest of the world and we still loved visiting parts of Europe. There’s so much to see.
Let me start at the beginning. Late in 2000, my brother-in-law and his family moved to Brisbane, Australia. My wife was devastated. She was going to miss her nieces, aged four and six at the time, so very much. How could her brother take them so far away?
We decided (my wife told me) that we would holiday in Australia once every two years. So we did. Here’s a tip for any of you who are hoping to move to Australia and who have aunties, uncles, grannies or granddads trying to stop you. IGNORE THEM! Then what you need to do is get them to visit you as soon as they can. Because, when they do, they will have the “now I get it moment” and all their anger will disappear. I almost guarantee it. They will see straight away what a fantastic new life and future you have given your children.
So, we holidayed in Australia in March 2002, July 2004 and December 2005. The first two visits we pretty much stayed in Brisbane, and just did lots of “days out”. Yes, we had a great time. But we didn’t fall in love with the place. So we were sticking to our plan to move to France.
Then came our visit of December 2005. This time we didn’t just stay in Brisbane. We did stay in Brisbane for Christmas but when that was over, we got into our car’s and drove to Sydney, getting there in time to see the new year fireworks. After that, we drove over to the wine making region of the Hunter Valley and stayed there for a few days.
Then we went to a beach called Teewah, which is a couple of hours north of Brisbane and was just stunning. To get to Teewah, you need to drive along the beach for about 10 or 12 km.
To get to the nearest pub, or nearest anything for that matter, you’ll need to do a little off roading. But if you know the way, you can be at Rainbow Beach in about 40 minutes. It’s a bumpy ride.
We did find the pub, but watching my lot slurp beer and eat crisps isn’t an enjoyable experience, so I spared you it. Rainbow Beach was lovely, but Teewah is special. Visit if you can.
A very young Elizabeth on Teewah Beach…
Teewah Beach sand…
It was on this holiday that we fell in love with Australia. We had had a glimpse of what the country, rather than Brisbane, had to offer. It was obvious there was so much to see. All of a sudden, being so far from Europe and so many other places in the world didn’t seem such a bad idea.
But it wasn’t just us falling in love with the country. For some reason, although our daughter was just 21 months old, Australia seemed to suit her so much. The outdoor life, the sporty life, the sunshine, the sand and the beaches. She seemed so happy, happier than ever before. When we sat her down on the beach at Teewah, we had never seen her so content. She just sat there for hours playing.
It was the holiday that changed our lives. It was the holiday when we decided we wanted to move to Australia.
Making that decision is as exciting as it is scary. Unlike France, where we could just “show up”, being allowed into Australia is somebody else’s call. Our job was to convince them.
Let the paperwork begin!
If you want to know more, read Moving to Australia Part 2 where I discuss 6 ways to move to Australia.
For a full chronological list and brief description of all the posts in this series about how I moved to Australia, please visit my page How to Move to Australia.