Five weeks ago I moved from Battersea to Kingston Upon Thames. For those of you who are not too familiar with London, that equates to moving from the city centre to the suburbs. City life had driven me and my boyfriend (who spent most of his time keeping me company during lockdown) crazy during the midst of the pandemic. Living on a through road, there was a constant stream of traffic, arguments in the street, and drug dealers in the alley behind my flat. Moving to the suburbs was supposed to be a new exciting chapter, with a little bit more headspace for me.
Instead, the first part of this new chapter has been a bit topsy turvey.
As many of my regular readers will know, I was due to spend 10 days back home with my family before moving to Kingston. That part went relatively to plan, until on the second working day of my trip home, I found out my job was at risk of redundancy.
I’d just signed a 24 month contract on my new flat, and now I was taking the biggest risk of my career and taking redundancy rather than fighting for one of the new roles being created. For a moment, I considered pulling out of the contract but I knew there was a high chance of losing my deposit, which I couldn’t really afford to do. Plus, I knew that if I wanted to find another job in London, I would need to be living nearby. I also had to take my relationship into consideration. Although we’ve managed to beat the odds so far, could our relationship really survive if I stayed at home in Northamptonshire?
So with nothing but I little bit of faith and a whole bunch of love, and a sprinkling of hope for good measure, I made the move to Kingston just over a week later.
My workplace have been very good about the whole redundancy thing. They’ve agreed for me to stay on until December which helps financially, and gives me a reasonable amount of time to look for a new job. Finding a new job during a pandemic was always going to be difficult, but changing career too??
Eating my Words
Before I moved, I kept telling people how much I loved moving house. Which generally is true. However, moving during a pandemic AND whilst going through the redundancy process has been exhausting, physically and mentally.
Cancelling bills was straight forward enough, but setting up new ones has been an absolute nightmare. With so many of the staff working for utility companies either on furlough or working from home, the only way of contacting half of them has been via Twitter, and then only expect a response if you threaten to escalate things due to the stony silence! At one point my water company were sending me a message every 5 days, and more often than not that was just to ask if my query was still outstanding!!
And don’t even talk to me about the palaver I’ve been through trying to get my deposit back from my previous letting agency!! I kept that flat immaculate, so when I received the checkout list I was shocked at some of the things they said were wrong! It’s unbelievable the lengths people go to not to give you your money back. I get that money is tight for everyone right now, but I kept that place spotless.
Then there’s the furniture issues. Moving from furnished to unfurnished may not have been my brightest move, but then had I known that redundancy was on the cards, I probably would’ve done a lot of things differently! To be fair, the issues don’t really lie with the furniture. It’s more to do with my current paranoia about spending money, especially when I could find myself without a roof over my head in 6 months time if I don’t find a new job. So far I’ve invested in a new bed (I have to admit, it is lovely to be back in a bed I can call my own with a lovely, new mattress rather than the ‘used’ one in my last flat!), and my sofa is on order (fingers crossed it should arrive sometime before Christmas!). As for everything else, I’m torn between spending money now while I have it, or saving as many pennies as possible in case I do find myself without a job for longer than I initially anticipated. So for now it’s bean bag chairs and boxes for tables, and I’m still very much living out of a suitcase!
Trying to get my deposit back (which should hopefully be back in my account this week), sorting my bills, worrying about finances, looking for a new job, AND continuing to work flat out in my day job, I currently resemble the walking dead!
Kingston Upon Thames
The one thing that has kept me going, has been my little adventures around Kingston and the surrounding areas.
I’ve tried to get out as much as possible in the evenings and at weekends, largely to stop myself from going insane, but also because Kingston is just super photogenic.
I desperately need some time off work, and thankfully in October, I’ve created some space to do just that (although that in itself was another dilemma, as taking leave now means I won’t get paid for it at the end of my notice period). I can’t wait to have a week with fewer things to balance. My bills are now sorted (fingers crossed!), leaving me with more time to focus on job hunting and getting out and about this Autumn to discover what else this part of London has to offer 🍁🍂