Thursday, May 03, 2007

A dry run

My time in Bristol is coming to an end, and by October we hope to have moved back up north. Today the flat went on sale and we had our first viewer. The place has never looked so tidy. We've found an apartment block in Manchester centre which we like, and so it's just a case of selling up now. The lack of commuting will make things much easier and less expensive for me, and the fact my fella will be going back to a less stressful job (but on more money somehow) is also good. And we will be much closer to our families in Leeds and Liverpool. However, I will miss living in Bristol and particularly Clifton. It's so pretty and affluent - in a way it's spoilt living anywhere else for me.

And although Manchester has a lot going for it and I'm excited about moving, my fella was a bit put off by the people at the weekend. We did a "dry run" last week, where we stayed in the Lowry Hotel in the centre and we timed driving to work and to our respective families. It's all very doable. And it was fun to be embedded in a consumer playground - but the people are a bit ruder and brasher there - and there was a contingent of drug addicts/homeless/beggars wandering around pestering people and trying to shoplift stuff. I guess the "real world" contains people from all walks of life - rich and poor, whereas Clifton feels like an upper-middle class (white) ghetto where it's easy not to acknowledge the growing social inequalities of the country. Neither of us are proper city boys either - so that's slightly worrying. And the thing I'll miss the most are trees and greenery, of which Clifton has a lot of and Manchester doesn't have much of. I'm not sure our cat will be able to go outside much either.

So this is the first home move I haven't felt completely excited about in that it's felt like a big improvement in circumstances. But hopefully these are misgivings that'll sort themselves out once we get there. And perhaps I will launch myself onto Manchester's Gay Village. But I doubt it. In fact, that's the one thing I'll probably never bother with about Manchester.


KAZ said...

We were sitting outside Café Rouge in the city centre today being served by a beautiful French guy whilst admiring the city in the sunshine.

I'm sure you will come to like it -but please give us the truth in your posts as it will be very interesting.

I won't be offended if you hate it. I originate from a village in Lancashire.

Oh and if you see a Joanna Lumley lookalike .. it won't be me.

Good luck.

Lost Boy said...

I was in Manchester with work last week for the first time in ages. While it was nice to be out of London, I wasn't crazy about it. Nice for a change, as my Gran would say. A friend of mine, however, can't imagine living anywhere else. Hope it all works out for you there.

Malcolm said...

I live in Manchester. I moved here from Newcastle. I find it the other way round. I find the people quite friendly.

If the apartment block you were looking at was in the city center - we could be neighbours!

Lubin said...

Kaz, I'm sure I'll enjoy it - don't mind my moaning!

Malcolm - yes, it's on the Irwell, behind Kendals.

Trashbinder said...

Oh Manchester, Manchester, so much to answer for...

KAZ said...

Lubin - I love the village.
My laboratory window looked out on canal St. It's a penthouse now!
Some more thoughts at my place.