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Uloma Ezirim: Diaspora Chronicles – 3 Good Things About Being in the UK

Uloma Ezirim

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This is a continuation of the Diaspora Chronicles series. Catch up on previous editions of the Diaspora Chronicles here

***
Now the UK isn’t all doom and gloom. There are some very beautiful things about the nation that give me the sweetest thoughts. 3 things immediately spring to mind.

Dignity in Labour
So I am relaxing in the beach somewhere in Malaga and the lady to my left is happily smearing SPF on her hands. She casts me a glance every now and then. Our eyes finally meet and I go “hello” and she replies and then goes on to ask me if I am from the UK. I answer in the affirmative. Excitedly she says “this holiday is just what I needed, my husband’s shifts were getting crazier by the minute, couldn’t wait to come out here”. The curiosity in me leads me to ask, “Oh what does your husband do?” With pride and smiles she replies “he drives the rubbish van for the council”. I manage to retain my composure as I go “oh I see, lovely.”

The UK is structured such that whatever strata you fall into jobwise, the accessibility to the good things of life is still reachable. Putting it simply, there is something for everyone regardless of what job they do. The progressive tax system of the UK is bridging the gap between the wealthy and the working class to some extent. This ensures that citizens have enough disposable income to live on; and if spent wisely, enough to grab some recreation. In holiday terms, there is therefore something for every group – from the islands of the Maldives to the beaches of Benidorm.

Health is Wealth
As much as people moan about the National Health Service (NHS), to me, it is a blessing – despite the queuing time for some procedures. The Early Years’ provision of the NHS is so rich and I am sure it has impacted positively on the lives of many. From the time your child is born, the health visitor comes to your home to check that all milestones are met. Any anomaly is identified and tackled earlier than later. When the health visitor came on a monitoring visit at my child’s 30-month check-up, she pointed out that her vocabulary was less than it should be. My child was not mouthing some key sentences. Fear filled my heart; but then she said: you need to adopt these changes. Get her to be inquisitive, don’t make everything so easily available, get her to do puzzles, let her make requests before you grant some wishes. As the lady left the house, the entire family, my mum in tow sprang in to action. By the time we finished with that child, she had to speak to “survive”! In 3 months, sentences were falling out of her mouth like it was going out of fashion. Who knew all those intricate sentences had been lying dormant in her overly content cute brain. I can still hear her saying, “Change the channel to Dora! Don’t like this! Don’t like that!”

Developed Townships
In our early years in the UK when “vacaying” abroad was very much a luxury, we did a lot of “staycations”. I do miss those days, sometimes.
We would drive for hours and hours and even in the farmlands or villages, one could still see all the basic amenities. My observation is that everyone does not need to live in the capital or big cities as schools, hospitals, recreation, shopping is available from the mountainous valleys of Northern Ireland to the quaint villages in Wales.
The UK offers unique career opportunities in its different towns and cities. Careers in oil and gas can be developed in Aberdeen, manufacturing and engineering in North England, financial services in Norwich, tourism in Southampton, the list is endless.
So even if family ties lead you to the bigger cities like London, Birmingham or Liverpool or, you can still spread your wings.

Before I forget, other options for growth are also available in popular university townships. For instance, Leeds, Sheffield, Portsmouth or Newcastle. The suburbs are calling for you, so you can get on the next train if you so desire.

I could go on but, will stop here so you don’t get bored. Looking forward to your comments. For more articles like this stop over at www.diasporachronicles.com

Cheers.

Photo Credit: DiversityStudio1 | Dreamstime.com

Uloma is a School Administration Manager. Her mantra in life is Laughter, Love, Relationships = Happiness. Uloma is very passionate about all things Nigerian and this is reflected in her creative expression. Join our community on www.diasporachronicles.com.

10 Comments

  1. Anne

    March 7, 2017 at 8:24 pm

    Nice one Uloma.Na for person who get paper o.

  2. Tee

    March 7, 2017 at 9:18 pm

    The NHS is truly a blessing

  3. maji peter

    March 7, 2017 at 9:45 pm

    Nice one Uloma

  4. Ese V

    March 7, 2017 at 10:55 pm

    Good write up.
    Er, Newcastle, city not “township”.

  5. FasholasLover

    March 7, 2017 at 11:11 pm

    Benidom=Shag fest.
    Good write up Uloma

  6. Jaygirl

    March 7, 2017 at 11:38 pm

    Nice piece. The NHS is indeed a blessing, I can testify to that. When the team-relocate cells in my brain start buzzing, the thought of life without the NHS shuts those thoughts down. I wish one day though our dear Naija will have a structured healthcare system…that works.

  7. Coventry

    March 8, 2017 at 12:07 am

    I am in Coventry for my masters and bored to death. Anybody wanna be friends with a Yoruba girl? [email protected]

  8. Nubia

    March 8, 2017 at 10:35 am

    You are so spot on Uloma. There is a whole lot more that makes the UK a great place to live. The assurance of steady career progress commensurate to the effort invested, One may never be super rich but able to afford the basic necessities and some luxury. A government and opposition that works with the interest of the people as central. …..And then of course the NHS, not perfect but one is assured of quality medical care. God Bless the United KIngdom!

  9. Jade

    March 8, 2017 at 4:46 pm

    As a student living with my sister in the UK, I could afford a tour of europe visiting 6 countries and 12 cities in 2 weeks, one of the best times of my life. But now wey i dey Naija, ordinary ticket to Paris dey give me HBP. Some days i completely regret moving back as nothing dey this Naija. Thank God for NHS O, when my mom had a tumor in her brain she was told in Nigeria that it was cataract and she needed eye surgery but the real thing was found and removed in the UK for FREE! Yearly scans are done for FREE, she gets her hydro-cortisone medicine regularly for FREE, abeg wetin remain? when people hustle to go to the US to have their babies just for blue passport I laugh, i will rather have my babies in the UK and get them NHS number (free healthcare for life) they can collect visa if they want to travel, e no dey kill.

  10. Kyjuan

    March 8, 2017 at 5:13 pm

    Amen to the NHS. Although there’s a lot of pressure on the system now….hence the government trying to properly screen access to it to ensure only brits get it for free. I’m torn as per that decision tbh as i was once a non-national too but at the same time i understand the amount of pressure it is getting as a result. It was free for me as a student 10 years ago but now as a student (and other visa categories) you have to pay.

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