Moving out to the University in London. One year in Brief.
First significant steps to independent life.
In August 2016 I have decided to move out to London. I saved money for maximum three months. I applied for a Student Loan to pay my tuition fees ( £9000 per year). I have no family in the UK, I had no friends, and I had no idea how was I going to survive. I just had the right mindset. I was sure everything would be fine, and the worst that could was that I would die. I did not consider coming back to Poland. I do not take steps back.
So here I go! I decided to buy a one-way ticket to London. What's then? I started to look for people who had the same situation as me. People in my age, who wanted to move out to study or find a job in London. I found two persons on Facebook. I've met Jacek, who desired to study at the same University as me, and Kasia who was doing a gap year in London. We arranged a flight date and we all bought a ticket for the same day! We booked Airbnb, and here we go! Let's the adventure started!
I'm in London. The ocean of possibilities, success, great economy, good people and surprisingly bad people! What do I feel? Excitement? Stress? Independence? Fear? Ohh, I am only 19 years old. I can do it!
From Airbnb to rental room, from rental apartment to Social Security Number (National Insurance Number), from Social Security Number to the first job!
First Job - Sports Direct. Wow! Wow! I have a job in London! In Sports Industry! Yay! Excitement! Happiness! Satisfaction! I was ready to share my positive energy and meet new people from all around the world!
Uh-Oh! Slow down, Nicola! Life is not that easy.
The first day- Quite cool job, friendly people, helpful managers :)
The second day - Work faster! Don't ask the same question twice! Why do you talk to customers for so long?!
The third day - I was treated like a robot... Literally! I was not allowed to have a more extended conversation with clients, nor with other employees. I had to work as long as they told me to work! Even though I was supposed to work until 8 pm, I was not allowed to go home unless the store was in order! Absurd! - I scream in my mind...
They said: ' You need to stay longer, you can't go home.' So I stayed, I did my job... it's 22 pm. After 12 hours of work, I tell them it's crazy to work 12 hours and that I want to go home. No! I can't because I need to do more work! So I escaped through the emergency exit...
I came back two days later, and I handed employment termination.
I have no job! What now?!
Studies! University had started! But wait... I need to pay my rent somehow! It's not usual rent... It's LONDON RENT! £££
I started looking for a job again.
Next Job - Zara!
I was treated much much much better! Pleasant atmosphere, friendly people, helpful employees! But the job was very monotonous! I couldn't stand it. I felt imprisoned in my mind. Every time I was thinking of ways to quick death (#semibazinga). 'How can people work here for so many years?'- I was wondering. After two weeks I said 'Goodbye Zara'!.
Next Job - Tennis Coach. This job is what I wanted from the beginning! My wings were slowly opening up! Oh yes! I love that position! I can do it all my life!
Small club, friendly people, excellent atmosphere, good money, and fun! Fun! Fun! Am I dreaming?
Winter is coming...! No indoor courts, frozen surface. How am I going to pay my rent? I don't want to work at any shopping store ever again! What can I do... What can I do! Nicola! You need to do something! Move your bottom and think outside the box!
Next job! - Tennis Coach. It's still cold January, but at least I have much more hours! More hours = more money = I can pay my rent = I can buy new Tennis rackets!
In the beginning, it was tough. Cold. But with time I had more and more individual coaching. People started to recognize and recommend me. My English was much better. I had more experience that moment. Everything was going to be less stressful.
February 2017. I was working as part-time Tennis Coach. I could finally afford to play tournaments during the weekend. Yes, you need to pay for each competition you enter! There is nothing for free unless you work for it!
Since February 2017 I was studying, I was working, and I was playing competitive singles in the British League! Impossible? Nothing is impossible!
I was finally able to live independently! I was able to pay rent and food by myself. I traveled everywhere by bike! London transportation is tremendously expensive! Especially when you're a student from Eastern Europe with poor currency exchange and when you're striving to make your dreams come true!
I learned what I had to learn in the small Tennis Club during which I was working between January and April. It was the Avenue Tennis Club at Finchley. Small, friendly Tennis Club with a fantastic atmosphere!
April 2017 I decided to move on and develop my Tennis Skills! I got a job! A job, about which I could have only dreamt! Regent's Park invited me for an interview at the Will to Win Tennis Club! Wow! Wow! Is this really happening?
April 2017 - I started cooperation with Will to Win, and I was working at the Hyde Park, Chiswick House Gardens and sometimes Regent's Park! Few days during the week at the Hyde Park at Chiswick. Perfect for me!
I worked with so amazingly experienced Tennis Coaches! I learned so much from them! It was like a Tennis course for which they pay you enough money! Fun! Excitement! Motivation! Positive energy!
In the beginning, I was assisting during Tennis courses. I was happy. I had so much to learn! So many coaching styles to analyze. Very eye-opening and fulfilling experience!
May 2017, Nicola is a small entrepreneur! I registered my own company and started to work as self-employed Tennis Coach across London!
August 2017 I have been offered an Athletic Scholarship in the United States! Another astonishing dream came true!
Without hesitation, I closed my company, and I told all my clients I'm moving out!
Let another adventure begin...