2018 - A Year in Review

2018 Country of Living: England in LONDON!

The year started off quite well with Mel continuing her job as a dog groomer at Dogtown while I continue working for Smartlogic. As part of my working from home full time, every two weeks the company gets together for two days alternating between, Warsaw (where one of our offices is located), London and other locations in the UK. While it is great to see each other the logistics can get a bit tiring particularly when you are not used to any sort of commute!

I completed my cooking course “The Complete Cook (Part 2)” from Leiths School of Food and Wine early in the year. I think these courses have helped me be a much better cook and have given me the confidence to approach at least the preparation of meals in a much more positive manner. Certainly my techniques are much improved though I do need to get more into baking and fish…(not necessarily at the same time).

After an week's holiday on the Spanish island of Tenerife we had a very unwelcome surprise at the airport when we discovered Mel's residency permit had expired a few months earlier (recently they changed the expiry period from 24 months to 18 months which likely contributed to this happening). The immigration officer who could have ejected Mel from the country instead granted her a 6 month visa and advised we get this sorted out. The next day we had an immigration lawyer involved and through him submitted an application to the Home Office to allow Mel to once again work and stay in the UK. Because of the situation Mel is unable to work is restless as the months go by with no response yet (six months and counting). An uncomfortable situation that we both hope will be resolved soon.

Despite this we did manage to make it to Cumbria in late August/early September to finally see the Lake District. We had planned on going to see Andre Rieu in July for his annual concert in Maastricht, Netherlands but obviously this had to be cancelled, replaced with a trip to the Christmas markets of Budapest in December, surely enough time for Mel's immigration situation to be resolved…? Er, no. I ended up requesting the return of my passport (being used in Mel's application) and going by myself in early December.

It really has been a disappointing year for travel but we have managed to continue travelling in the UK and going to loads of shows and events here in London…


A bit of travelling…

  • February - My mother and I went skiing in Chamonix which was nice but a fair amount of faffing about with transport to the various ski areas…
  • March - I went to Warsaw (Poland) for another work trip (not the best time of year to visit, truth be told).
  • March/April - A weekend visit to Dublin, Northern Ireland and a brief visit to the Republic of Ireland.
  • May - An amazing week-long trip to Tenerife…that ended on a big low on our return to the UK.
  • June - I went to Warsaw (Poland) for a work trip.
  • August/September - A week break in the wonderful Lake District in Cumbria.
  • December - A pleasant, but lonely, visit to Budapest, Hungary.


With the exception of my mother visiting for my trip with her for skiing in Chamonix we have not had any oversea visitors…and none planned for the new years either.

Reviews of the Year













Next Year

We really do not have much planned for the new year given Mel's travel situation but I am sure once that is all sorted out we will be out and about with our typical abandon! I will say we do have several events already booked and I do have a work trip to Poland in the first week of the year…


Visit here for my review of 2017.