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Friday, 20 May 2011

Research Trip for Relocation

We are about to welcome the young couple who will be staying in our home while we head to the states for six months, as it's that time of year again when we switch countries. I was thinking how easy this transition is now, compared to earlier days. How lovely it is to just pick up the phone and have a friend meet us at the Tampa airport. We catch up on local news (who gossips?!) while driving across the Skyline Bridge and I am eager to once again get my toes into the Gulf of Mexico.
But it hasn't always been such a smooth transition. When you change countries with children, your focus is more on "How will they settle into the new school?" What do we do if the baby gets an earache on the flight? What if my teenager finds the transition a real pain?"
This is where a research trip several months ahead of the actual relocation is envaluable. Over the next several days I am going to write about what makes a successful research trip, especially when you are doing this as a single mother. The reason I am focusing on single mothers is that even when you are married, most overseas assignments are still male (see link for stats)and often the mum/mom does the research on her own.As one vetran of multiple corporate moves said to me, "When it comes to the research trip, I always feel like a single mother. OK, a single mother with a great paycheck." With corporate relocation packages not being at their best these days, I will focus on a more "doing it yourself" budget variety. Though I continue to write mostly about relocation between the UK and USA, it is my hope that the principles will aplly to other regions of the world....I always have my parents relocation to South Korea in mind!(And believe me, there was no beforehand trip.) Enjoy the prep. It's part of the, today I am back to shoving things in the attic!

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