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Author: michael

Emigrating to the UK: settling down

Emigrating to the UK: settling down

Now it has been 3 months since I landed the UK, and most of the necessary things to do have already been done, including renting a house, opening a bank account, registering for GP, etc. I have joined a masters swim club and a triathlon club and started training. Also, I am ramping up my swimming to prepare for my Channel attempt in September. I have also started venturing out of the town I live. In these two months, I…

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Emigrating to the UK: the first month

Emigrating to the UK: the first month

During the self-isolation period, I searched property listings to see where I could have my first home in the UK. Finally I rented a studio in Lansdowne, about 10-minute walk from Bournemouth Station, with 7 months fixed tenancy, starting on 10 May 2021, 20 days after I landed the UK. The standard list of moving into a place has a lot of items to do. Find a home Buy things for my new home (e.g. kitchenware, beddings) Register for bills…

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Emigrating to the UK: leaving Hong Kong

Emigrating to the UK: leaving Hong Kong

On 20th April, I left my old home and my family for the final time, knowing that I was embarking on a journey of no return (the Hong Kong border is completely closed to anyone who has been in the UK in the past 21 days to prevent importing COVID variants), and I will be on my own since then. I brought 2 pieces of checked baggage because 1 was not enough. There was a lot of swimming and diving…

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Emigrating to the UK: pre-departure

Emigrating to the UK: pre-departure

I made my final decision to emigrate to the UK after I swam the Cold Half this year, such that I could apply for a visa as soon as the digital application channel opened. The newly-established visa, called BN(O) visa, is a visa specifically for BN(O) citizens and their family members to emigrate to the UK as a response to the breach of Sino-British Joint Declaration. BN(O) citizens can apply for a visa for 2.5 or 5 years which is…

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Emigrating to the UK: introduction

Emigrating to the UK: introduction

I took a one-way flight from Hong Kong to the UK to start a new chapter of life. Starting from this post, I will write about my emigration progress. As mentioned before, my original intention of this trip was to do a working holiday in Europe departing in winter / spring 2021, such that I can have a better environment for me to develop my orienteering skills, to become a world-class sportsman. As the working holiday was a once-of-a-lifetime chance,…

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Channel swim training the wrong way – the end

Channel swim training the wrong way – the end

As the last season of COVID restrictions took away the opportunity for me to do any pool training in Hong Kong, apart from the month of November, I was so stressed that it affected my well-being and I had to visit a psychologist. The measures I took to manage it including suspending training, limiting my time thinking and working about it, etc. I once considered giving up but I judged my situation was not as bad as to the point…

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My life in Hong Kong is over

My life in Hong Kong is over

The completion of the World Trail Orienteering Championship (WTOC) team selection race has marked the end of my last major piece of responsibility in Hong Kong before my departure on 20th April. It was one of the job to do as a Hong Kong team member for WTOC this year. My final 3 years in Hong Kong was full of regret. If everything was known in advance I would already signed up a working holiday in 2018. In short, I…

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Cold Half 2021

Cold Half 2021

On 21/2, I did the race Cold Half the second time as a solo. This race is my most important A race in Hong Kong, which serves as my benchmark after half a season of winter training. In 2020, I mentioned by doing this race, I could decide if I was ready to start my preparation on my ultimate dream channel swim. I did it and completed in 5:14, then signed up for a Channel slot in September 2021 despite…

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To give up or not to give up

To give up or not to give up

After my failed qualification attempt last month, I told myself that I would try again later in the month or February, but now God forbids me to do so. Since that week the weather has been consistently warm again that we now have returned to 16-24°C air temperature and 18-19°C sea temperature now. I have already found some people outside Hong Kong who are willing to take my September slot in case I decide to give up my Channel swim….

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My final 3 months in Hong Kong – giving myself a last chance to get improvement in swimming

My final 3 months in Hong Kong – giving myself a last chance to get improvement in swimming

As my Channel training in the past year went wrong in every possible aspect, the problem of not being able to get back to the right track has already made me too stressed that it’s affecting my health. After visiting a psychologist last week, I have decided to suspend my Channel training, and try to find a friend who’s willing to take my spot in case if I finally decide not to do it this year. My former Total Immersion…

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