Glasgow looks like home, for now…

Well, time has passed and we have now (almost) left behind the hotel, jet setting lifestyle. Almost because we have one last trip to make next weekend (May day weekend). We will be renting a car (well a 7 seater van) and driving back down south to Sutton in Greater London to drop off my Mum who is heading back to Australia and to collect the rest of our luggage. In the meantime, we have now found and settled into our new flat in Merchant City in the heart of Glasgow. We have all the amenities and utilities arranged and, especially now that we have the prospect of regular bills coming in, I am now looking for work in earnest.

Glasgow is turning out to be a very comfortable place to live. In many ways it is quite like Adelaide. The people are quite laid back and friendly (well, most of them, but this is Scotland) and the layout of the city is rather grid like. There seems to be quite a lot of restaurants, nightclubs and cafes (although with kids we might not be able to see quite so many of them). We have still yet to find a good place for lots of fresh veggies and fruits (we also currently have an inestimably small fridge) but haven’t found the farmer’s markets yet. We also have to look around the west end to see what kind of shops are round there.

As an aside, for anyone that has wondered about the funny little phenomenon of west end / east end in cities in the UK, there is an interesting explanation. In most UK cities, especially ones that had a lot of industry, there tends to be a west end that is posh and upper class, and an east end that is working class and common. This is to do with the fact that in the UK the prevailing winds are mostly from the west off of the Atlantic Ocean and towards the European coast. This means that the pollution from the factories would be blown towards the eastern side of the city, meaning that the east was usually full of smoke and grime from the factories. Thus the rich bought in the cleaner west side of the city and the poor in the grimier east.

So we cut the difference and chose the Merchant City in the centre of the town. Merchant City used to be a warehouse and market area which also housed (and still houses) a number of civil building for the city. Now it seems to be in the midst of a redevelopment rush as a lot of the old warehouses are being converted into apartments and so forth. Unfortunately we happen to be living right next to one of these redevelopments in progress, still, it’s probably why the rent was so reasonable. The funny thing about that is that all the building sites I’ve seen in the UK is that they have these signs that apologise for the noise and inconvenience and often state a membership in an association of builders that are courteous to the general public around them (no late noise, cleaning up rubble, making sure that dust isn‘t a problem, etc). So I find it amusing that they don’t seem to work weekends and they all stop around 5-6 pm. From what I remember in Australia, most people would be ecstatic if building sites followed that ideal.

Anyway it’s getting late and I’m off to bed. For those that are interested, I’ve made a quick web gallery of some of the photos I’ve taken and will try to get it uploaded soon.



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