The sin bin

It’s been a while but here goes nothing. Firstly how is it 2020?! A decade of my expat journey done and dusted. I can’t believe at the start of 2010 I was happily sitting in Jersey, starting a new job and had no idea that by the end of that year, I would be sat in Prague beginning a new life abroad. Ten years of this life and it’s gone in a blink of eye. As I marked this milestone, I asked myself am I a better expat now than I was then? I can’t definitive say either way, somethings are way easier now, but the longer you’re away the worse somethings get and  I confess, at times, to be blighted by the 7 deadly expat sins. Continue reading “The sin bin”

Fake it ‘till you make it

There are many life scenarios where that element of self doubt creeps in and we smile and nod our way through that awkward dinner party conversation, which you have absolutely no clue about. We have all embellished a CV or done a little bit of self PR in an interview but these are socially acceptable moments to sprinkle a little of that BS glitter. My question is when does that fake it till you make it attitude become detrimental to your expat experience? Do we really know who are the oscar winning actresses are in a sea of bad ass, we totally got this women? Continue reading “Fake it ‘till you make it”

Here but anywhere

Most days living abroad are just like every other life, days turn to weeks, which turn into months and nothing extraordinary happens. If you are lucky, you even forget where you are, it becomes so normalised and routine, that you barely even notice that you are in this random corner of the world. The environment melts away and you’re simply going about your business, no longer aware of the cultural or climatic differences. Last week I was fully in the swing of my usual antics, which led into a wonderful social weekend, when it dawned on me, I could have been sat anywhere in the world. Kuwait had faded into the background. When did somewhere in the world become anywhere in the world? Continue reading “Here but anywhere”

Calendar girls

Most people I know work in a 12 month cycle, the year begins January 1st and ends on preferably a drunken night on December 31st. I used to be one of those people, living the standard calendar and making those new year resolutions to be broken my mid Feb. Expat me, works in a completely different way. My annual flags seems to have moved and fall into 3  distinct phases. Pre Ramadan, summer break and the new year. In this case the “new year” in my expat circle is September, this has now become the clean slate, the bench mark for all the great intentions for the 12 months ahead and the re setting of routines. When did my end of the year become the start, the middle become the end and the start become the middle? Welcome to my expat life! Continue reading “Calendar girls”

The knockout punch

It’s funny, this expat life seems to be life of extremes. Nothing is every truly easy, even when things are going well. Sometimes even in the relatively calm, mundane, nothing to see here moments, you can get an extreme emotional reaction. You can’t actually fathom why or how this has occurred but whether it be  no sleep, change in the weather or lack of caffeinated wisdom, you can have an off day. When is a bad day just you needing a slap and when do you need to land the killer blow? Continue reading “The knockout punch”

Emotional suitcase

Frustrated, comforted, distant, familiar, lonely, happy, uneasy, content. How can one person feel such a variation of contrasting emotions? Well I can second a guess that I am not the only expat who has had to navigate this rollercoaster during their summer break.  It seems extreme, when I see it there in  black in white, but I can honestly say that this is not an exaggeration, in fact I could probably add another half dozen adjectives, to describe my two weeks back home.  I question myself constantly and upon my return to the land of sand I ask, when did finding the familiar comfort of home, make me feel so lost? Continue reading “Emotional suitcase”

Call me Michelle

Are there people in your life that you rely on no matter what? People that seem to be the backbone to their family, never faltering in the midst of drama or chaos? I know many and most are women. There is a kind of man that is drawn to this expat lark, but there is also a kind of women that can handle it. I often question whether the outside world still perceive us as the “trailing spouse”  with no real direction or minds of our own. Gin swilling, ladies that lunch, who are living it up around global locations, simply fulfilling their husbands career dreams and not their own. Is this accurate or yet another statement filled with judgement and misunderstanding? Continue reading “Call me Michelle”

Virtual reality

In this day and age, we have (sadly?) mostly succumbed to social media. I don’t think there are many people I know, that don’t have at least one of the big 3. I did pretty well avoiding the whole thing and only joined Facebook when I left Jersey for Prague, how else would my so called “friends” know what I was up to?! Since starting this blog, I realised that social media does play an important role in promoting, sharing and building content. It has also given me a beautiful online community, most are expats, and we all support each other from all corners of the globe. However, as I posted one for the ‘gram last night, Hubby laughing at my ridiculous angle, not daring to move a muscle. I questioned whether I was creating many of the misconceptions about me and my expat life. So I ask, what is real and what is just virtual reality? Continue reading “Virtual reality”

When did that happen?

Now please don’t fall off your seats at my appearance in blog land. You know what they say, if you have nothing good to say, say nothing at all, so I guess I kept my mouth shut! The wheels of expat life keep turning and before you know it months have passed and I cant believe the summer exodus is nearly upon us.

So in light of my somewhat triumphant return, I know you are dying to hear what profound insight I have for you in this post. Well it dawned on me that whilst the expat wheels do keep turning, the routine of life magically makes the days, weeks and months pass unnoticed. But things do change. Little changes, that almost sneak past you. Where you stop, smile to yourself and say “when did that happen?” Continue reading “When did that happen?”

The annual agonising

There comes a point in January, when the post Christmas catch ups are had, that latest trip home seems like a million years ago and the typical desert expat starts wishing the year away. I don’t mean it’s unbearable, a slog or there is pure desperation to get out, but there is a definite moment when the planning heads go on and we start to have markers in the calendar. We haven’t even finished January and I bet that most have up to September all planned out! So as Hubs and I are joining this bandwagon and trying to pin down our plans, I ask myself it this really necessary or just a desert thing? Continue reading “The annual agonising”