( Part 4 )
The long waiting for a response from the bank was made pleasant by the news that my husband’s extended family also lived in Ireland. It turned out that it was quite close to us, only about 50 km away, in a seaside town. What additionally surprised us was that it was in the vicinity of my husband’s work, but they lived by the sea and my husband was working in the mountains, on the opposite side of the highway. We were very happy that our family was growing in a foreign country 😄.
We went to visit them by train, because we did not have a car yet, and since it was also our first trip with this kind of transportation in this country, we also had new experiences related to it. The train went along the coast, so on one side we could admire the beautiful sea and on the other side the picturesque land. After reaching the destination, and at the same time to the end of the route, a “welcoming committee” 😉 was waiting for us. I got acquainted with my new family who welcomed me very nicely 🥰 and showed us some of the Irish mini Sopot (famous Polish seaside resort) 😉.
A year has passed since we moved to Ireland. The second Christmas without loved ones, away from family and in a foreign country. A strange experience. The atmosphere of Christmas is there, but it is not. Shops decorated with festive decorations, music also festive, but somehow different. All dressed in light jackets, men in suits, and some only in jumpers. Unlike in our country; down jackets, hats, scarves and gloves. The lawns are striking with their beautiful green colour and the temperature, like ours in spring. Where is the magic of Christmas, I am asking! 🎄⛄❄. We spent Christmas Eve just the three of us. We managed to eat a quick Christmas Eve dinner because my husband had to go to work, so we didn’t enjoy ourselves for a long time. The first day of Christmas was a repeat of the previous one, with the difference that this time we had breakfast together, and then my husband had to go to work. And it was these holidays that started the tradition of the next ones.
Another year has started. On January 19, 2008, the next stage began with us. Our baby daughter was born. Tiny, tiny, with blonde hair 🥰. Unfortunately, she was in no hurry to enter the world. Maybe she already knew what awaited her and preferred to postpone it in time 😉. She slept very well on the first night (I think she was gathering strength to fight 🤔) which I needed because the delivery was very hard. I thought to myself, “I have such a polite, calm child. Poor mums who stay in the room with me and their children cry non-stop”. My joy did not last long. My baby daughter decided that she would not be worse, and she would show them all who rules in this room. The next night, when she gave a spectacular concert, the whole hospital must have heard her, and it was definitely not me who thought with pity about those poor mothers in my room 😜. After all, my baby daughter was the Queen of the Night, and she has remained so until today (luckily, not at night anymore 😉).
Days, weeks, months passed until finally, the day we were expecting came when we received a reply from the bank. In the meantime, my husband talked to a Pole at work who worked on a construction site and told him that we were buying a flat. He was advising us not to buy at that time because prices would fall, but we didn’t take it seriously. The desire to have your own apartment and comfort was stronger than anything else. We wanted to have our own right away. Coming back to the decision from the bank. We got a mortgage. Hurrrrra!!! Credit installment, cosmic. It was over 2/3 of the salary, and we barely managed financially, but our joy was huge. Especially since they dropped the price by € 30,000 at the last moment. We were even happier. But nothing is for free. As it turned out quite soon, after a year, the recession came and the value of all real estate fell by half. Don’t worry, your eyes are fine, that’s how it was. BY HALF !!! Our neighbours paid only half of what we paid for the same apartment. Well, nothing but sit down and cry. I couldn’t take this. Such a sacrifice to get a mortgage for such an amount, with the installment consuming almost the entire salary, and after a year it is half cheaper 😭. But what could we do, nothing but accept it and move on. I can tell you honestly that I couldn’t shake off this shock and disbelief for a long time. All these situations that have accompanied us so far have had a huge impact on my psyche (I will also write about it). I kept asking myself:
“Why? Why do we always have to have it uphill? Since we got married, we’ve had it uphill. Everything breaks down, bad things always seem to happen to us. As if we were married to bad luck, I wonder why? When will it finally end? And will it end at all?”
One day I will write a short post about our “hills”. Now let’s go back to the happier moments of our lives. At that moment, we were glad that we got a mortgage, and we will finally be on our own. Imagine: young, foreigners, he is a bartender working in two jobs, she is pregnant, both of them do not speak the language (well, my husband’s English is better than mine), in a foreign country, after a year of stay they went to the bank for a mortgage. Either crazy or … I don’t know how to put it. What were they thinking?
Everything great. 82 m2 duplex apartment, luckily with equipped bathroom and kitchen, but what about the rest? We had to pay 20% your own deposit + furnish it. What now? 🤔 We have to take a second loan, but where? In Poland. We can still get it there. It was a beautiful time when all the banks were giving loans to everyone in foreign currencies. As to everyone, so to everyone without exception, they gave us too. The bank was happy and so were we. For that moment, of course.
In the meantime, we bought our first car with the steering wheel on the right-hand side 😁. Fortunately, I had some training driving my brother’s car, which he sometimes lent us. I must honestly admit that when I got behind the wheel for the first time, I got lost. Many times I “changed” gears with my right hand wondering why the door was bothering me 😉. Buying a car has brought a bit of variety to our lives. Thanks to it, we started exploring a little more. Although, not enough for the amount of time that we lived there. I would even say not at all. But when?! Our favourite destination, when we managed to find this time by some miracle, was Glendalough. However, our first long journey was a trip to Northern Ireland to the Giant’s Causeway (Already on Tuesday you can see some photos that I managed to find from that trip). It was our joint family trip, the farthest trip in Ireland that we managed to organize together. We with our son and 4-month-old baby daughter, my brother, and our cousin who also came to stay in Ireland for a few years and lived with us in the beginning.
Finally, we received the keys to our new apartment at the end of October 2008 and moved in mid-November. Quick action. Problems started right after. It turned out that there is something wrong with the pipe in the bathroom and the entire wall is wet. OK. They fixed it, but that’s not the end of the problems, it’s just the beginning. At that time we didn’t know it yet.
Christmas’ time has come. The third one outside the homeland. We bought tickets for our parents for Christmas. I thought to myself: “It will be fun. The new family member, new apartment, first Christmas with grandparents. It will be great”. Knock-knock. Wake up! It’s time to go back to the real world. “But how?” Just like that. Ryanair, that was the name of the airline from which we bought tickets, cancelled flights for the holidays. Strike. “What?” Yes. It was supposed to be so beautiful 😞. Fortunately, they refunded the money, and we could buy tickets again, but this time it wasn’t so colourful anymore. For the price of 4 tickets, we could only buy 2! And so we did because in the meantime it turned out that my husband’s parents could not come for health reasons. So my dreams about family holidays came true at 80%, with my parents, brother, and cousin (and her boyfriend, at the present time). It was nice. To make matters worse, the tradition was upheld and the husband, after a quick Christmas Eve dinner had to go to work. The rest of the evening passed in a quiet, family atmosphere. Overall, Christmas was very warm, like springtime, in favour of my parents who could take advantage of it and explore Ireland. It was more like Easter than Christmas looking out the window 😉.
Christmas, Christmas, and after Christmas. Everyone went back to their homes. Time to get back to real life.
Moment for You