I have never truly felt at home in the Netherlands. As a child it was somewhat okay, as I was sheltered from most of it by my surroundings. Yet as I got older I just got stuck feeling isolated without friends and contacts in the country. Then I began to experience the sheer intolerance and almost aggressively dismissive attitude by both health professionals and politicians. This led to me finding a measure of tolerance and help in Germany which I had hoped for but never suspected existed. Before that I had already tried to escape the Netherlands once, ending up in Canada. Unfortunately that didn't work out.
After that I tried to escape more times, at one point being this close to putting my last savings into a plane ticket to Australia, but deciding at the last moment to not risk it. It wasn't until I got a job offer in Germany last year that I had a clean and easy way out. It's been over a year now since I left the Netherlands and I'm still glad to have left that country behind me for good.
Now that I have to find a new job due to unfortunate circumstances I find myself in the situation where I get a lot of job offers from mostly the UK. After putting my CV on Monster.com last Sunday I have been emailed by almost a dozen headhunters already, for various positions, most of them involving some kind of C/C++ and embedded activities. This is just what I was looking for, to be honest. It's put my mind wondering about possibly moving to the UK next year, and all the logistics and changes that would bring.
While I wouldn't mind living again in a country where I am more than just fluent in the national language which still has a decent health system (for now) and just some funky power plugs for which I'd have to buy a few metric loads of adapters, it does remind me of how far away the concept of 'home' for me truly is. I feel more like a nomad, to be honest. Just staying in a place for a little while to then pack up and move again. Considering that on average I have moved every year for the past decade or so, plus a few times before that, it's not so surprising.
Although Germany so far is immeasurably more pleasant to live in than the Netherlands and I'm beginning to feel a tiny bit at home - to the point that if I just had a nicer place to live in (less noise/fewer PTSD triggers), I could see myself living here for a number of years - I know that I'd feel probably pretty much the same if I lived in the UK. There's no real place that binds me.
I would love to settle in a nice place, have a great house and transition there from working full-time for someone else to working just for myself. It could happen, but first I'd have to find such a place. I'm not sure where this place would be, this place called 'home'. I should know it when I see it, however.