After almost 8 years in the UK and with over £10,000 spent on visa and residency fees, the Lady finally had her British Citizen Ceremony yesterday. Congratulations to her!
The whole process has been a drain both financially but also emotionally. The UK doesn’t make you feel welcome and the whole process is very much off-putting and Kafkaesque. From having to fill out your name, address, date of birth multiple times on the same 70+ page application form to having your fees hiked over the years and little add-ons like the £200/year health surcharge to help pay for the NHS (although, I would have thought that the Lady’s above average salary and associated Tax and NI would go some way to paying for that).
The ceremony itself as a bit of a waste of time but you needed to attend it as part of becoming British – no execeptions allowed. It was nice to see the Council Chambers and the building was very nice indeed. The ceremony itself only lasted 15 minutes but there was time for tea and coffee afterwards with British biscuits (but no Dundee Cake despite being us being in Dundee – and Blue Riband being made in Poland!)
The funny thing about the Ceremony was primarily that it turns out that the most common occupation in the room was Doctor and employer was the NHS. They had similar stories to us on how long their application had taken and how much it had cost.
Anyway, now that the Lady has full UK Citizenship and can apply for the passport it opens our options of escaping from Blighty and to FIRE overseas knowing that we an always coming back againg. It took a long time but let’s hope it’s worth it.