Zsolt and I are playing a waiting game. Well, at this very moment we are sitting by the lakeside of Balaton – Zsolt on my Acer with the LCD screen half blacked out, me on his tiny Samsung hoping his patience holds out till this is posted – but we are, despite the appearance of beach bumming, waiting.
Moving to a new country involves so many details, there is the visa, the shipping, the accommodation, the job-hunt, the unsettling upheaval, the anticipation of new things . . . and then there is the money.
Six years ago when we first moved to England, Canadian/UK currency exchange was at about two to one. For each two Canadian dollars you’d get one pound. Not a glorious exchange, but it did suggest that when (if) we ever moved back to Canada our one UK pound would be worth a brilliant two Canadian dollars.
Then the recession hit. Whi8ch still wasn’t all that bad, because we reckoned we’d stay in the UK regardless so no exchange was necessary. Then cancer came knocking.
And so plans changed and – as you know – we’re off to Canada at the end of this month. What money we have (used to have far more before one year of treatment plus Zsolt writing his thesis, but nevertheless I think we’ve still managed to get away with a reasonable chunk of savings. Certainly we could have lost far, far more if we’d been studying/treating in say, the US.) is now worth less than it might have been six years ago.
So now we are watching and waiting. First we need the card reader – a nifty device provided by the banks so that secure transactions can be conducted without coming into the branch. The card reader looks like a calculator. But beyond that I know nothing, because while we’ve order the card reader maybe two weeks ago, it still hasn’t arrived.
Card reader is essential. Without this, we cannot move our money to Canada.
Second we are waiting for the exchange to improve. Unfortunately, the only way the UK exchange with Canadian dollars can improve is if Canada puts out some negative reports on the economy, or if the US goes bizerk. I’d rather neither situation happen since we’re moving there. Cause, seriously, with a strong economy we can earn way more than our current savings . . . but nevertheless we are watching the exchange.
It’s like watching a horse race. With every advance of the exchange we cheers. With every drop we groan. Overall I’m still hoping that Canada stays strong strong strong, but when it comes to watching your money shrink or grow, sometimes it’s hard to look beyond the end of my nose (aka bank account) and into the future of ‘potential earnings’.
Maybe this is a bit boring. It’s actually rather exciting, the freaking exchange is high right now, at least, higher than it’s been all year, but our hands are tied until the card reader arrives. Every morning we’re checking the mail box, and ever afternoon we’re looking at the dollar, the business news, and trying to create some make-shift amateur forecast of what the dollar is doing.
Alternative. The exchange could work in our favour not because Canada is suffering, but because the UK is doing great. That would be nice for everyone, except the Canadian exchange students.
Anyhow, enough about money. Things not to talk about during polite conversation: politics and money. But I figured this blog isn’t always so polite, so it wouldn’t be a problem.
Now, back to the horse race. I am, quite honestly, curious to see what happens.
(And back to the grassy beach. Zsolt said to me the other day: “Anyone who wants more than this is crazy. We’ve got a beautiful view, beautiful water, beautiful weather and here we are together. Can’t get any more perfect.” To which my mind began to image how else our lazing on the beach could be more perfect . . . but you know what, all that other stuff is speculation. In that moment Dr Samson was correct. We’d be crazy to want anything more. We’d be crazy to alter that picture with any wishes or wants. It was, as it is right now, a very lovely time on the beach.)
(PPS. Speaking of Zsolt. He is totally hooked on the game ‘hearts’. That’s good news for my Dad. Finally he’ll have someone willing to play round the table after dinner. Add on the fishing to come, and Zsolt’s like the perfect son-in-law.)
(PPPS. Man, I love it here.)
(PPPPS. I realize the title has almost nothing – or rather, entirely nothing – to do with the post. But I thought it was fun.)