Economic migrant?

I was born in the East Midlands, though my parents both hail from south London – born within a few tens of yards of each other.  My roots go back to North Wales, East Anglia and (apparently) the Hugenots (though I’m less than wholly convinced about the last, despite my extraordinary marks on French tests in the late seventies).

I live about as far south as is possible, well without taking things to a foolish extreme and relocating to the Isle of Wight or a life maritime, but somehow my heart belongs to the north.  The scenery, the accents, the geology: all call me north – though the softness of some of the water is a slight negative (I always prefer to obtain my RDA of calcium direct from the tap).

So, why I wonder have I lived so much of my adult life south of my point of origin?  I fear I must blame work and my parents (for not setting me up with a substantial trust fund) – but also, sadly, my terrible laziness.  Lacking an independent income, work seems to have sited itself in the south and I have lacked the vim (or indeed vigour) to seek out northern employ.  I am, in many ways, that most despised of folk, the economic migrant – if not in body, then (perhaps worse) in soul (though, to most 6Music listeners, northern soul means something entirely different).  This could only be worse if I were to use my ill-gotten southern gains to retire to the north.

2 thoughts on “Economic migrant?

  1. matathew says:

    No mention of your Geordie phase? As I recall, this occurred a few years after your Mexican phase, and involved living in South(?) Shields and working variously in Teesside and at a University. In those days, an economic migrant was seemingly pulled northwards.

    By the way, is Hugenot the same as a Huguenot?

  2. Stuart Ffoulkes says:

    I think passing through the old stomping grounds of my “Geordie phase” may have been at the psychological root of this post. Work back in those bygone days did, indeed, lie in the north of the country and my Shields too was always the northern one. However, had I been seeking to maximise my economic advantage, even then I would have remained down south – though this never occurred to me at the time. It was a sense of responsibility – and perhaps of exploration – that drew me pole-wards (either that or my iron boots).

    To answer your final question, my French émigré forebears boasted a soft “g” and were much larger than those using the more traditional spelling.

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