Same but different

my Chinese scooter

Before we moved, Ben said –

“I’ll make just the same mess in Jersey.”

And Hannah said –

“I thought I’d live in Plymouth all my life and now I’m being cut out of it.”

Well, both are partly right.

Ben is still messy and disorganised, and Hannah no longer lives in Plymouth.


Ben spends so much tme outdoors he has little time to make a mess in his bedroom. Which is much easier on the eye.

And in five months we’ve already been back to Devon once, we are heading back again for half term, and will probably go again to repeat our annual weekend camping deluge of last year.

So not quite cut out.

But even though we’re not quite in another country, life is different here.

There are the cars for a start. The last time I lived here it was pretty bad. This time it’s so awful that I’ve bought myself a scooter to save commuting time and parking charges.

I took my dirt-cheap, auction-bargain piece of Chinese jiggery-pokery to Bob’s for a box to keep my lippy in, and he told me it wasn’t roadworthy.

So now I’ve had to book it in for a service.
It’s only a couple of months old, and I bought it to save money, not to add itself to the long list of Things That are More Expensive Here.

And there are the houses.
We’re still renting.
As house prices slip in England, they continue on a relentless upward trajectory in Jersey.

So the ultimate question will be – is life in Jersey worth the drop in our standard of housing?

At the moment, the children would say YES.
I would say – the jury’s still out.
And Blog Fodder would say – a definite NO!!

He’s still adjusting. But he likes the auctions.
They’re e-bay without the irritating technology.

And now our limited storage space is cluttered with bits of old china, derelict TVs and vintage (non-working) phones that he says “were part of a job lot that might do for something.”

I’m wondering what they will “do for”.
Perhaps to make the mess Ben is no longer around to create?

About Beta Mum

Here you can find the ramblings of a trapeze artist turned journalist who ran away from the circus to join the BBC. Cathy "mine's a Kir Royale" Keir then spent thirteen years working in Jersey, Guernsey and Devon, before downgrading to what you see before you. She has contributed articles to The Guardian, The Stage and Television Today, Junior Magazine and both the BBC and Bad Mothers Club websites. She has two children who think women can’t be prime ministers. She blames herself.
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3 Responses to Same but different

  1. Mya says:

    I love your scooter! I can just imagine you buzzing around the island on that. And have you had your hair cut yet? Obviously, it would need to be a style resistant to the unfortunate helmet-hair look.

    Mya x

  2. Glad the children are enjoying their new lives. But I’m worried. Are we married to the same man? I too live with cupboards full of old computers, bills, DIY implements and, well, assorted crap. Whenever I suggest a clear-out the pained look in his eyes makes me feel like a vivisectionist.

  3. Jen says:

    I realised, reading this, that I’ll never be able to come back to Jersey and buy a house. While Sussex is an expensive place to live, nothing can compare with the crazy prices of the rock.

    I’m not quite sure how I feel about being priced out of my birthplace. Hey ho.

    Scooter sounds terrifyingly fun. Being roadworthy is soooo overrated.

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