As the dust is seeming to finally settle from the Covid madness and the world has opened back up, it's no question that there's been a mass exodus of 20 and 30 somethings leaving New Zealand in the search for new experiences and a change of scenery, part of that list is Julianna Permitin.

You might know Juls through the writing she’s done for rey through ‘They Say, By Rey’, so she is no stranger to putting pen to paper and sharing her thoughts with you all. 

In her final journal entry for rey Juls takes us through her move and the mental load that comes with it, something we’re sure will resonate with a lot of our readers.

Journal entry: final

May 2023

Hello darlings,

It happened to me, I fell into the great exit and moved to London! What this also means, is that it is my last journal entry with Rey - a bittersweet moment as I have been so lucky to have been able to share my words and others since joining back in 2021. 

I really couldn’t put my finger on what I wanted my last entry to be, the block on writing was too real when I was busy organising visa approvals and picking out the best compression socks. So here it is, the final few weeks of NZ living and now nestling in my first month of a new city.

It’s been real!

Much love,

Julianna xox

Making my way downtown, but with CityMapper in hand

Leaving dos, woos and tootaloos!

I’m usually one that wears her heart on her sleeve when it comes to emotions, empathy and tuning into my feelings. But boy did the ‘leaving do season’ stop any level of processing of what the future would bring. As many of you have heard, I am in lust with my colour coded calendar. So when the time started to circle in and I saw ‘10 days until your flight’, I really didn’t feel that wind of “OH MY GOODNESS!” - it was more of a.. “Darn I should really start packing my things.” 

As a right of passage, my better half and I moved back in with our parents, leaving our beloved Ponsonby villa, to save some serious cash. Naturally, living with in-laws and then back at my parents was a nervous moment. But it was much more of a delightful and loving experience, since my last 18 year old self was living at home. You really realise how awesome your family is, when you’re in your late twenties and a mom cuddle is a moment away and finishing your plate is a must. (The things I would do for a mum hug, especially now being on London soil).

A few welcomed kilos later and some truly special evenings, it started to settle in on how much I would miss family, even though I am guilty of responding to text messages every three working days. 

As for the experience with living with in-laws, the real ice breaker was when I got home from my work leaving do (already dangerous combination, which included a BYO and a couple of Karaoke solos) and in the morning I got a “honey, glad you got home safe, we watched you on the security cameras” - with a laugh to end that sentence.. Oops!

Speaking of the leaving dos, there was lots of “are you ready for the grey weather?” and “London people are so grumpy” - yes indeed, good thing I love dressing in winter attire and I am probably one of those grumpy people, especially before my flat white (which I heard coffee was awful compared to our delightful options in Auckland. Confirming that is the case). But alas, the leaving parties, although so important - I think I learnt that one is just enough, sure some of my friends would have said “can they leave already?” 

Can you feng shui a suitcase? 

Now I knew I would be shifting my life overseas since before the historic lockdown days, so I have been keeping an eye on collecting clothes and spending. However, what you don’t predict is condensing EVERYTHING into 35 kgs (plus a few extra of your boyfriend’s suitcase of course). My new passion for divider cubes from Kathmandu and googling “the art of organisation” were upheld by me turning to anyone that would listen saying “should I take this?” 

This was, I would say, a spiritual moment for me. I could not thank reselling websites enough - not only is it a detox, but the savings really thanked me for letting go of pieces that were just collecting dust. I kept saying “sell this, you’ll get a hotel night stay in Paris” or “those shoes would not be practical on the tube, darl.”

Do the clear out, even if you’re not moving. Plus it gives your pieces another life, probably to a gal that will adore it more. I came across a page called Wet Rat (for all you girlies that already know!), which is a group of hundreds of Kiwis that are selling vintage and designer pieces. Thank me later!


That walk off the flight

Now this was the mighty day when it all hit like a tonne of bricks. I woke up on the day of the flight and took myself to my last reformer pilates class and a sauna to match. Arriving at the sauna appointment 20 minutes late because of Auckland traffic, grunting like the Grinch but then walking out like a new woman, with all evil being removed from my body.

The day continued with jumping on my suitcase multiple times to shut it down and debating whether to take some ‘fem-electronics’ that I heard would be banned from my luggage, deciding not to take that risk (if you know what I am referring to). My suitcase reminded me of my loud chatty mouth, after a few too many dirty martinis. We got there in the end. 

Once we made it to the airport, my beloved best friend came along as a support person for my mum, who I’ve said before is my ultimate person and soul mate. But, surprise surprise, the support was needed for me because it all decided to unravel and I was left bawling my eyes out with all close family members (in-laws included), having to be pulled off (with Kim Kardashian diamond earring type of crying)… we got through to security, with a few side eyes from travellers. I don’t blame them.

The flight was rather a blur, the sleeping pills were probably to blame but I will add, the compression socks were divine for the tootsies. I expected the walk out from the airport to be something out of Sex and the City, wind in the hair, London Bridge playing in the background - but there was no time for that. The energy was more like carrying two suitcases onto the hot, humid tube. I’ll leave that image there.

First impressions

I am still in the first impression zone, almost like I’ve been dating London for a month and it’s hard to tell, we are both still putting our best foot forward and only touching on our best qualities. 

First impressions are much harder to make when you’re making new friends, specifically girl friends. I actually stepped out of my comfort zone and made a gal pal finder account (like Bumble for making friends). I quickly realised that there are SO many people like myself who are keen to make new connections and would rather make them outside of the female bathroom (I will leave that in 2014). Although I haven’t had luck and ended up deleting the account, I’ve already made some sweet acquaintances - it’s just all about starting from scratch and building trust again. It sounds tiring - it is, but I guess this is what the next three years are all about.

On a comforting note, I will suggest packing your sleeping robe. Yes, it seems to potentially take up most of your suitcase, but take it! It’s been the sweetest and kindest cozy feeling of home. Best decision of my bring-a-longs, along with my ‘Life of the Party’ bag, which has been a fantastic ice breaker and compliment goer from the Brit girlies (which always helps the self esteem and supporting ya NZ local).

That’s it from me, hope all of you enjoy the rest of our journey and being part of our Rey family, whether local or across the globe.

Xox Juls

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