Friday, October 23, 2009

My Interview with Kristie... The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

QUESTION NO. 7. What are some of the good, the bad, the ugly…and the funny things you have experienced living overseas? Please share any funny or fun stories you have about the place you are living.

Living in Maine for almost two years now, I have a lot of experiences both exciting and unexpected... both beautiful and ugly... both unforgetable and traumatic.

I am always amazed at how closed we are to nature. It amused me when I would meet a deer crossing the dirt road when I go for a morning run...


or wild turkeys in queue...


or some playful squirrels and chipmunks seeking for acorns at the backyard...

or a hungry bird having lunch.


I was so thrilled the first time my Hubby took me for a snowmobile ride to get pizza in the middle of a blizzard.


I can't forget the first time I caught my first fish when Hubby and I went ice-fishing in a frozen pond.

And I am constantly awed by the changing landscape of the countryside.


But living in Maine is not all about the good things. Maine is not a total paradise on earth. Winter in Maine is beautiful yet threcherous.




I hate driving in winter roads especially after a snow storm or worse... an ice storm.


Friday, October 16, 2009

My Interview with Kristie... The Permanent Change

QUESTION NO. 6. Do you want to move back to where you came from? If not, what is it about the expat life that makes it all worth it to you?

Do I want to move back to where I came from? YES and NO.

Yes. I will surely go back home but only for a short visit or extended vacation. Don't get me wrong. I love my country and the people I left behind...

my family...


my friends...

my students...


But here is the thing, before I finally decided to come here, it took me quite awhile to think things over. It was not an easy decision. I needed to consider a lot of factors knowing that once I made the decision there is no turning back. But then, me and Hubby have planned to retire to the Philippines someday. So yes... moving back is a distant possibility.

No. I am not moving back... soon. Maine is my home now. Sure, I had some disappointments in some aspects of my life here but I also had learned to deal with them and I am doing a-ok now.

I am working and I love my work.


I have new friends whose company I enjoy and with whom I learned new things and culture.





I now enjoy lots of activities and things that I never experienced back home.

And if ever we do retire in the Philippines, we will surely be back here in Maine during the fall and early part of winter for...

the hunting...
... and ice-fishing season.

What makes my expat life worth it? Making that drastic decision to leave home was just that... drastic. But still I am glad that I did it because I know if I didn't I will forever wonder and deal with what-could-have-been-if-I-didn't kinda feeling more synonymous with the word "regret".

Monday, October 12, 2009

Interview with kristie... The Reason

QUESTION NO. 5. If you were to do it all again (moving to and living in another country), what would you do differently?

Living in this country could be a dream come true to some. But for me, this country is the last place on earth I wanted to go to. Before I came here, I had this big plan in my mind to travel all over the world and visit key cities in all of the 7 continents of the world including Antartica. Seriously! But God has other plan for me.

If I have to do it again... moving to another country... I would definitely move here in the US. Despite the fact that I didn't like it the first time I came here due to some disappointments which is normal to any immigrant. But then, maybe if I did not expect too much, things will be different. or maybe if I brought more positive attitude things will be otherwise. And perhaps, it would help a lot if I have decided to do it when I was a little younger.


But then, looking back now, I know there is no other way I would have made my decision differently. I found my soulmate and I am fine with it.


Finding him made the change bearable.


Finding him made the transition period smooth.


Finding him made everything worth it.


Some surprises have come a long the way.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

My Interview with Kristie... The Challenge

QUESTION NO.4. What was the most challenging part of living in a foreign country when you first started out as an expat? Do you have any advice for those facing similar challenges?

If living behind everything and bravely facing an unknown future to be with the man who swept me off my feet is not challenging enough, then I guess dealing with the unexpected and some disappointments would be fair enough to say that being an imigrant is not for the faint of heart... it is never easy.


My advice to those who are in the same boat... take the Online Dating 101 course.


Seriously, be open-minded. There is nothing that will prepare you for the unexpected. Welcome new ideas, culture and tradition with open arms. And going back home is never an option. Just deal with it and you will be fine... eventually.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

My Interview with Kristie... Work-related Issue

QUESTION NO. 3. Do you have any advice for someone who wants to get a job in a foreign country? Do you have any advice for someone who wants to get a job in the country you are now living in? What was your experience with getting a visa/job? Was it difficult?

Getting a job in a foreign country is not as easy as I expected it to be. Despite the fact that I have the credentials... communication skill is the big hurdle.

Language barrier is a big issue. It is not what you say but how you say it. Another thing is that I came here when the economy is not as favorable as it used to be. Competition with the locals is tough. So if you are looking for a job here, don't expect to get the job the you are trained for unless you come here on a working visa. In my case, I am a teacher by profession but I can't get a teaching job unless I get certified by the State and that means that I need to take a short refresher's course and pass board exam.

I came here on a Fiance Visa so getting the visa is not that hard because my Fiance was the one who filed for it. I only prepared the documents needed by the US Embassy, passed the Medical Exam and the Interview.

The only difficult part in coming here is leaving behind my family... my friend... my roots. It was indeed a tough decision I made. I had to sacrifice a lot of things just to be with the "Love of my Life".

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Interview with kristie... My new home

QUESTION NO. 2. What do you like/dislike about your new home overseas?

I love the changing seasons of my new home. I love how the sceneries change each changing season.
I love the color of fall...
the whiteness of winter...
the blooming flowers of spring...
and warmth of summer.
I love picking strawberries...
apples...
and pumpkins from the farm...
or wild blueberries in the woods...
and of course, dining on lobsters too.
I love ice fishing...
snowshoeing...
and snowmobiling in the middle of a blizzard...

I love Maple Syrup Sunday, garage/barn sale and flea market shopping...
I love camping...
and gold panning...
I love long driving in the countryside...
and going to agricultural fairs.

On the contrary,
I hate raking fallen leaves of autumn...
I hate black ice, slush, snow storm, ice storm and bitter cold days of winter...
and most importantly, shoveling snow!
I hate the mud season which is the transition period between winter and spring where the snow is thawing out and making huge mud pits and puddles...
and I hate the bugs of summer!
Pin It button on image hover