How the Ukrainian lives in Australia: the story of a programmer.
The Kievite Pavel Tubolets graduated from the KPI in 2008 and, after some hesitation, accepted the employer’s offer to move to Sydney.
“The Observer” asked Paul about the relaxed attitude of Australians to wealth and achievements, about amazing holidays a year in length and about why local beaches resemble bodybuilding competitions.
Never considered Australia as a place to live. In 2008, I was quite satisfied with the life of a programmer in Kiev, I just graduated from university and for two years I worked as a programmer in the Kiev office of an Australian company. During his work he managed to visit a three-month business trip in the main office in Sydney. Right after my return, I received an offer to move to work in the main office. I refused.
Not that something was holding me in Ukraine, and there was no fear of moving (I had already seen Australia and knew what to expect), but I did not really want to move. And even the beginning of the crisis did not change my attitude to the issue: the salary of programmers in dollars, with the depreciation of the hryvnia, the purchasing power only increased.
But the crisis affected not only our country, and the Australian company decided to close the Kiev office. Me and a few other colleagues were invited to move to Sydney again, and this time I chose the move, otherwise I would have to look for a new job.
Features of work in Australia.
I continued to work for the same company, in the same team, so there was not much difference. Is that the Australians attitude to work a little different. As a rule, there is no strict control over who spends time at the desk, when he comes and goes. But at the same time playing a fool is not accepted, and if people have already come to work, then they are doing business. About the employee is judged by its results, and not by any formal indicators. Usually, there is no problem in having to work from home several times a month. Without any questions, they let me go on long holidays, at least they always let me go. It’s enough just to see how many Australians travel the world!
Everything is built on the balance of work and free time. Few people pursue a career and try to earn all the money in the world, here it is not particularly necessary. People are confident in the future and know that everything will be fine with them. Dear car here you will not surprise. Almost anyone can afford to buy BMW for 100 thousand dollars on credit, so that little attention is paid to material achievements.
Australia is a country of immigrants. Officially, more than a quarter of the population was born outside of Australia, and if you consider those whose parents came from another country, you will get more than half. Sometimes there are signs of xenophobia, but, as a rule, in relation to the settlers from Asia. I’ve never noticed anything like this. On the accent generally no one pays attention, this or that accent is with the majority. So Australia is very welcoming to the new arrivals, at least Sydney for sure.
In Australia there is a state medical program “Medicare”. Each worker contributes one and a half percent of his salary to the taxes on this program. It covers part of the medical services, but not all. For example, a typical visit to a doctor with a cold costs $ 50, and this is the maximum that Medicare covers. If there is a desire to apply to a more expensive clinic, where the reception costs $ 80, then $ 30 will have to pay in addition from your pocket.
There is a standard catalog of prices for services, and if a particular doctor considers himself a specialist of a higher level and wants to take more for services, the difference has to be paid extra. Many services in “Medicare” are not included at all, for example, dentistry, cosmetic operations, etc. It is possible in addition to “Medicare” to buy private insurance, which will smooth out these corners.
The hospital in Melbourne.
The level of medicine and doctors is difficult for me to assess objectively, but in appearance everything is quality, everywhere new equipment, and in general some hospitals look simply unrealistically cool.
Once I was not lucky to get to a local hospital. I got very poisoned, vomiting began with blood, I had to call an ambulance. I can not say that everything was so good. After I was brought in, the nurse examined, made sure that I was not dying, and put a dropper, since I was very dehydrated. They took blood for analysis, gave several pills. Then left in the waiting room for seven hours, only occasionally came to see if I was still alive. All the doctors and beds were occupied, so I had to sit in the waiting room.
After seven hours of waiting I was found a ward and finally a doctor came. I was left in the hospital for the night and discharged in the morning. All costs covered “Medicare”, except for the most urgent call ($ 390).
The main kind of leisure here & ndash; this is a barbecue (BBQ). Almost every house has a gas grill. Everyone throws everything at him – meat, fish, vegetables. Gather guests, bring salads, beer, actually meat for frying – and communicate.
In each park and on the beaches there are free electric BBQ-grills. Sometimes you need to throw one dollar to use the grill.
In general, in Sydney most of the year the weather is very warm, a lot of time people spend on the street. Many are surfing, especially in the beach areas where I live. You can swim, play tennis and golf (fields and courts in Sydney literally hundreds). Nearby there are mountains, there you can go hiking, ride a mountain bike, climbing. My friend and I climbed to the highest point in Australia – 2200 meters above sea level (just above Hoverla).
Summer in Australia lasts from October to April (as in the entire southern hemisphere). From May to October, it is cool here, at night the temperature drops to 8-10 degrees. In winter it is about 17 degrees. When the water +20 – this is for us, fastidious, cold.
When I first went to the beach in Australia, I did not immediately understand what was happening. It seemed like there was a bodybuilding competition – there were solid athletes around. I realized that sport in Australia is a religion.
All halls by local standards are available. For example, I pay for a monthly subscription of 104 dollars. It includes classes on single combat, boxing, judo, as well as various simulators, free weights, platforms for weightlifting, Olympic barbells.
Like all Australians, I like to travel. In 2015, I decided that I should try the circumnavigation. I agreed at work that I will leave for a year, and then I will return. Here you can do it. I started my journey from Malaysia. Initially, I had an idea to get to Europe by land, but there were obstacles of a formal nature – for example, the lack of a checkpoint between Burma and India. So I flew from Burma to Calcutta. Then through Iran and Turkey traveled all over Europe, flew to Mexico, traveled to South America and returned to Australia in the summer of 2016. The coolest holiday in my life.
It is difficult to single out a dish, calling it Australian. Local people consider the steak to be their kitchen chip. I must say that in Australia, a very good beef.
In general, Sydney is a paradise for those who like a variety of food. Since there are a lot of emigrants, the kitchens are very diverse. In my neighborhood there are six Thai restaurants, there are Indian, Nepalese, Moroccan. And, of course, many European, especially Italian and Greek.
The restaurant here does not go on special occasions, but always and always. It is inexpensive (sometimes the price is almost the same as if you buy food and cook yourself). I often buy organic products, in practice I believed that they are really of the best quality – from meat to oat flakes. True, are at times more expensive.
A few years ago, the Australian dollar was insanely expensive (more expensive than the US dollar). Then the prices were insane. Now, after a round-the-world trip, it seems to me that we have normal prices for a developed country. The products are as in Europe, maybe a little more expensive. I spend a thousand dollars a month on food purchases. Gasoline costs a dollar per liter. A cup of coffee is 4 dollars.
The only thing that is indecently expensive, beyond the bounds of good and evil: rent and purchase of housing. We rent a nice house in a pleasant area, 10 minutes walk from the beach. I pay my share – 1150 dollars a month. Just a month, we pay 4,500 dollars for it. Plus additional payment for gas, electricity, internet. This takes a large part of the income.
A good apartment in Sydney costs at least a million dollars. Simpler – from 500 thousand.
The first time, when I returned after a round-the-world trip to Australia, I was busy searching for housing, buying a car, restoring at work. And somehow it seemed to me at once that I did not go anywhere. Here life is tired, nothing happens, unlike Ukraine. Stability, which you quickly get used to. Single & ndash; traffic is getting worse, more people and machines around.
What’s next? While the question is open. I want to travel and try some new work.
How the Ukrainian lives in Australia: the story of a programmer.