We’ve published 4 blog posts about my expat experience the past weeks. Please follow the following links to read the 4 posts.
I’ve had generally very good feedback on these, and many LinkedIn requests. However, I’ve also had some remarks that I’m not very positive about the USA in my writing. I’m sorry to say, but the people who understood that from the blog post, completely missed the point. The blog was not meant as a glorification of America. It is about the experience, the transformation, of a person moving abroad and integrating/assimilating into the “foreign” society. It is not meant to be about America, it is meant to be about the expat, the person. Things you experience, things that are different, roadblocks, etc. Immigrants are a different breed. It is something people that never lived abroad for an extended period of time will never understand. I’m not asking for understanding or (dis)approval. My intention is to give people who are willing to take the jump, an idea what to expect. Do not give up while waiting for your visa, do not stop your life while waiting. Pay attention on remuneration, comparing is difficult, it is OK to miss things, but don’t get homesick. Understand you will change as a person in every way possible and understand the people around you will most likely not understand. Just like Steve Jobs was nervous every time he had to go on stage to show the latest Apple product, so does the expat feel nervous every time he/she ends up in a new situation. And just like Jobs, the expat will come out of the situation stronger and a step closer to perfection. But, and this is a big but, it is not for everyone. You need to be the type of person who wants to be nervous about things, who wants to be put out of your comfort zone. THAT is the point of this 4-series blog post.
I am here for 1 year now. It is still fun and exciting, for example this month I got my first credit card approved (party!), I renewed my vehicle inspection sticker, I visited the DMV (changed the address on my car, they did not even ask my ID… I must have a very trustworthy face),…. yes, I do find those things fun and exciting! It is part of life here, and it is fun to feel part of life. The holiday feeling I’ve had the past year, is starting to fade a bit. Perhaps it will come back with the heat, we will see.
Some news in Dallas this week! The city council is banning free plastic and paper bags starting Jan 2015! This means we all have 9 months left to stock up on bags!
It’s been a while since I last posted here. That’s a good sign, apparently I am too busy to think about my blog.
Christmas was great. Thank you to my American friends for inviting me! It was a blast!
New Years was awesome too, spending it with the most multicultural group of expats I could ever imagine. Almost every continent was represented (except Australia), which was kind of cool. A lot of fun, and a lasting hangover on my credit card statement
I’ve been here almost a year, so start to get into the ‘normal’ routine of living. Re-signing my apartment lease, changing the cable bill (which I cancelled to the bare minimum because I have NetFlix now). It is weird, because I still feel like I am on holiday here, not really living. Sometimes I do forget I am not a local, which is a proof of assimilation… I hope. I’ve been cooking a lot at home lately. Although I enjoy cooking, I miss having my out-of-town colleagues around and hang out with them. The USA consultant life, I’m really hoping for it to happen this year!
2013 has been a really great year for me, but somehow I feel like 2014 will be even better. February is very promising with lots of parties, friends, food, travel and fun at work.
Tomorrow is the ‘Big Game’, good stories may come out of that. Then we move to St Patrick’s Day, which is kind of my personal ’1 year’ mark. I have my first out-of-Dallas assignment and going to travel to New Jersey, through Philadelphia (PA). I need to get myself some additional sweaters and a warm coat to walk around there. I get annoyed these days if temperature falls below 60F. Too much of the good stuff around here.
There is much more to tell, but not things I want to share with the internet… sorry!