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Archive for the ‘Expat Life’ Category

When summertime beckons, many of us find ourselves pondering the annual question: home or away? Whether it’s a long-planned holiday far afield, camping in a field (aka caravaning), day trips in the general vicinity, a picnic in a bucolic setting, or simply a barbeque in the backyard, it’s the season we want to be doing something different. So […]

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Welcome back to what I hope you’ll agree is a fascinating story of professional transition amid cross-cultural life. This is the second part in a three-part series of how two expat business women —  Evelyn Simpson (previously The Smart Expat) and Louise Wiles (previously Success Abroad Coaching) —  living in different countries met, collaborated on a joint survey project, […]

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Time for another entry under Expats A to Z,  a series of posts about the little things that can make a difference in how we approach some of the challenges and experiences of expatriate — and repatriate — life. I’m talking about those qualities and traits we can nurture within us not only to simply survive, but thrive amid constant change. You […]

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It’s hard to believe that a little over a year ago I was in the final stages of completing The Emotionally Resilient Expat. This meant writing the last bits and pieces, tidying up the table of contents, drafting the acknowledgements, finalizing the references and resources section, creating an index, and responding to the edits, questions […]

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In the early days of missing Malaysian Airlines Flight #370, I had no intention of writing about it. The tale of how 239 people boarded an airplane in Kuala Lumpur but never made it to Beijing is a sad, troubling one. The last thing I want to do is add to the grief, frustration and […]

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What a difference a snowfall makes. Actually, it’s our third of the winter. I’m from upstate New York so we don’t count flurries or dustings or even light coatings. If it doesn’t stay on the ground and can’t be measured in inches, sometimes feet, it doesn’t count. So with a good six+ inches of unspoiled […]

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Time for another entry under Expats A to Z,  a series of posts about the little things that can make a difference in how we approach some of the challenges and experiences of expatriate – and repatriate – life. I’m talking about those qualities and traits we can nurture within us not only to simply survive, but thrive amid […]

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As mentioned in Under Construction, I hope you’ll join me as I navigate the re-entry stage in our repatriation journey. Every three months I’ll share a series of ‘snapshot’ blog posts about the particulars of building a new life from scratch, filed under the post category Re-entry Reality. I’ll look at everything from making a home, engaging socially, staying […]

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I hope you’ll join me as I navigate the re-entry stage in our repatriation journey. Every three months I’ll share a series of ‘snapshot’ blog posts about the particulars of building a new life from scratch, filed under the post category Re-entry Reality. I’ll look at everything from making a home, engaging socially, staying healthy, and stretching […]

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At the risk of sounding entirely self-serving, I am going to share with you a development I hope expats*, cross-culturals, current and adult TCKs/CCKs, global nomads and repatriates alike will find heartening: the rise of books chronicling all and sundry aspects of expatriate life. I know my mentor, Jo Parfitt, will find this gratifying as […]

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Glancing at the calendar this morning, I realized it’s been almost three months since leaving the Netherlands. Twelve weeks from when I strapped myself into my assigned airline seat, Daughter to my right, our pets Oli and Ava beneath us in the acclimatized pet cargo hold. Eighty nine days since I watched the plane rise […]

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Over the years, storytellers and screenwriters have been perpetuating a myth which many of us have bought into. The fallacy is that the hardest part of moving – be it across town, across country or across the world – lies in the decision itself. Hours spent wrestling with what ifs? and how abouts? followed by a sleepless night […]

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Well, well, well. Look what the cat dragged in. Yours truly, sheepishly shrugging while simultaneously cringing at how pathetic this looks. When last I posted several weeks ages ago, I dropped the bombshell we were moving back to the US this summer. That news was indeed incendiary on a personal basis as we had fully expected […]

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I’ve often wondered what I would say in a post like this. I’ve played it out in my mind before, I just never thought I’d be writing this now. You see, it’s time for that kind of post. Not the kind where you tell everyone you’re moving on to another expatriate experience, although there were a […]

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What I find fascinating about living in another culture is discovering how things are done differently than in my home or other countries. An example is when people are required to wait in line. One culture will queue up neatly – with near military precision – while another culture’s line resembles a full-contact rugby scrum. […]

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Today was Queen’s Day, the biggest national holiday in the Netherlands. They’ve been celebrating the monarch’s birthday since the late 19th century, and this marks the fourth Koninginnedag festivities we’ve observed. I mentioned in another post that it’s a lot like a mix of New Year’s Eve, Fourth of July and Mardi Gras (with more […]

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Time for another review of a book written by, about or for expats. Not only does Jeremy Holland’s From Barcelona: Stories Behind the City happen to be all three, it’s also a collection of short stories. To non-literary types, they sound surprisingly simple: just rattle off a quick tale about someone who did something (or had […]

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Last weekend I had the opportunity to attend the annual Families in Global Transition conference (aka on Twitter as #FIGT2013). The theme this year was ‘Cultural Integration and the Illusion of Closeness.’ It was, in a word, exhilarating. Inspiring. Tremendous. Thought-provoking. Reassuring. Okay, it was many words, all those and more. Two thought-laden days dedicated to exchanging […]

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I have been thinking about this post for days, weeks, even months. I’ve longed to be able to write it, but made myself wait. There were times I never thought this day would arrive. Now that it’s here, my thoughts are a (barely) coherent mess and the words are tumbling out on the page. Well alrighty […]

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Some weeks back, I was upstairs working at my desk when the doorbell rang. I had a sense it would, given that Oli was already bounding down the stairs, barking his little fool head off. When he gets like it means he’s heard the minute squeak of the little wrought iron gate in front of […]

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