Orkney changed our life!

by Michelle

In 2018 myself and my dad were asked to come to Orkney to carry out work. I had not long had a baby - she was 4 months old. My partner stayed at home with her while I came to work. We did 2 weeks on, a week off and so on, for 3 months. I loved being in Orkney but obviously I missed being home with my family.

Every time I went home I couldn't believe the difference in the people. Why was everyone so stressed, why was everyone in such a rush? I hated it and longed to be back in Orkney.

Myself and my dad have worked all around the UK and never have I fallen in love with somewhere as I did Orkney.

One day I was sitting with my mum and asked, would you move to Orkney? I explained to her what it was like and she said yes. I spoke to my partner about it and he also agreed.

They came up to have a look around before we made the commitment. After that we proceeded to make the big move to Orkney.

Fortunately for us we already had work here. In the job we have we get to meet a lot of people so we found it quite easy to find our feet.

After living here for 12 months my dad went to the doctor and discovered he needed a double heart bypass. He was sent to Aberdeen hospital to have the procedure.

I truly believe moving here saved his life. He never would have got the time to go to hospital if we were still south with the amount of pressure people put him under to carry out jobs. The work load is completely different here and the people are so much more understanding.

We have been here 3 years this year and we would not change it for the world. Okay, the winters are long dark and windy but I can deal with that to have the beautiful days we get throughout the year. If you move here to blend in and work hard and contribute to the community, all should work well.

It's not as easy for everyone to make the move as it has been for us and that is unfortunate but I truly believe everything happens for a reason. Being asked to come and work here was a life changing opportunity and I am truly grateful.

Comments for Orkney changed our life!

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Wise words
by: Rhonda

Michelle, thank you so much for sharing your story about moving to Orkney with us and our readers.

I agree, there is a lovely pace of life here in Orkney if folk learn how to relax into it. Your tips to blend in, work hard and contribute to the community sums up the best advice any of us could give to someone contemplating moving to Orkney.

I'm so glad that your dad is okay and that you and your family are here. Thanks again for your wise words, and all our best to all of you.

Couldn't agree more! It is very important to understand that Orkney is unique. Don't try to change it to be like elsewhere or it loses its character! NEW
by: Jo Jones

"When in Rome, do as the Romans do" applies aptly to Orkney. The locals don't bite, so feel free to ask questions!

Well said, Jo. NEW
by: Rhonda

There's quite a variety of folk living in Orkney. Being the hub of much coming and going by sea for millennia has encouraged a certain diversity here, and yet Orkney as a whole has its own distinct way.

I've found that new folk are welcomed in Orkney, though I suspect snobbish, know-it-all types find less of a welcome. That's true everywhere, though. Be decent to everyone, do as the Orcadians do and you'll find your place.

Thanks, Jo.

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Mermaid image (Rhonda's pages) and storyteller image (Tom's pages), and all other illustrations except where noted are here by the courtesy of our dear friend - Stromness author, artist and historian, Bryce Wilson MBE, who owns all copyrights. Thanks, Bryce!