Expats

  1. smee82 Well Known Member Member

    After dealing with a whole load of stuff over the last few weeks that no one back home can understand because i live in China and life is just is not the same I was curious to how many expats if any we have here? I remember a few living i China that dropped a few Q's and disappeared and one living in Thailand when i first joined that i haven't seen around for a while.


    I thought it might be nice for us Expats to have a thread not just for fish related stuff but for that general life stuff that those back home dont get. i have to admit i got the idea from VWTDI02's Odyssea owners club thread.


    so if theres anyone out there Ive spent the last few week dealing with chinese office politics because the old dean retired and the new doesnt know me and in China the only thing that matters is how much they like you not how good your are and ive only got 5 months own my contract.

    On top of that my Fiancee's grandmother is in hospital again for another stroke so i have to walk the fine line and do a little bit less then my fiancees brother-in-law (really its her cousin in law but this is china) so i don't make him look bad in her families eyes but doing so makes me look bad. My fiancee has told me im not allowed to go visit the hospital because ive been every day for a week and a half because her brother-in-law has only gone once and her grandma is complaining he is not good anymore since they got married.
     
  2. Kill Switch Initiate Member

    Hi Smee

    Also Expat, Currently living in Saudi Arabia

    It is currently the month of Ramadan which means that all Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset.
    The difficulty is that no-one (adults) is allowed to eat or drink anything in public. I have no problem with this in principle but no food, very little sleep and 50 C` heat make for nasty driving and interesting working experiences.
     

  3. smee82 Well Known Member Member

    Kill Switch How about in your work place are you allowed to eat and drink there or is it also forbidden? I couldn't imagine not being able to eat out for a month after living in China where eating out is a big thing and has such a big influence on relationships.I didn't realize it was Ramadan none of the Muslim restaurants are closed here, I really like their food strangely enough it reminds me of home.

    I got a offered a job in Saudi Arabia about 6 or 7 years ago teaching English and the salary offered was great but along with the job information was 2 or 3 pages of everything we couldn't do there. Most was about Drugs, alcohol and being in public with members of the opposite sex. That an the fact that I was told we were to live in walled foreign communities and encouraged not to go outside of them made me decide not to go. Is it as strict as i was told.
     
  4. Jake98 Member Member

    I have always been curious about the motives behind this. If you dont mind me asking what led you guys to move to a different country?
     
  5. smee82 Well Known Member Member

    Jake98 I was never settled in Australia and the longest consecutive time i have ever lived in one city in Australia was a little over 2 years so for me going to another country wasn't a big deal.

    I worked as the manager in a bowling center during uni and not long after after I graduated I quit my job, went back to my grandparents farm for a holiday and saw a job teaching in china offered in the local paper.
    I thought why not get paid for a holiday got the job and landed in China 2 days after my 22nd birthday.
    Not sure why I stay, I tell other expats that are new to beware and that its either a drug or a disease and i'm not sure which one but all I know is once your infected or addicted you can never leave.

    However in all seriousness if any one asked i would without hesitation tell them to get out of the comfort zone and go to china for 6 or 12 months. The experiences Ive had here a something you could never get anywhere else.

    On a personal note im guessing your about 16 because of you username but if i had of know before i graduated high school what it was like i would of loved to come over and do a year studying high school in china.
     
  6. Jake98 Member Member

    Thanks for the info, in hindsight the 98 after my username may be misleading. Its actually the year of my truck haha, im not the most creative in coming up with usernames. Im actually in my last year of studying at a university.

    I will try not to get this thread too off topic as I am happily living in my home country. Everyone is different I guess, for me I love my country and dont know if I could ever live somewhere else. Would you ever consider becoming a Chinese citizen?
     
  7. Kill Switch Initiate Member

    The eating at work is complicated ... If you are with friends only, and behind closed doors where u can't be seen, it is done. Else at home. Once the sun has set you are allowed to eat, so not starving for a month. Just while the sun is up.

    The advantage of Ramadan is that most places only open at 10 am, So one is able to sleep late. The shops are also open from 9:30pm - 2am
    This is mainly due to the local culture that celebrate in the evening and often only go to bed in the early hours of the morning on most working nights.

    WRT rules...... There are very strict rules about no alcohol/drugs what so ever.
    It is also deemed very inappropriate for unmarried single people to interact at all without supervision.
    This is further compounded by the very strict dress code regulations.
    Women are not allowed in public without an abaya.( long sleeved, floor length black dress) and most locals will wear a full hijab with a veil . ( completely covered head to toe).

    Yes we do live in a Compound as they are referred to, with other expats with lots of security.
    This , while it may seem restrictive allows us a measure of normality as the strict Islamic dress rules / customs are not enforced in these compounds.
    Also compound has a rather negative connotation, they are mostly very nice gated communities with some more expansive compounds housing golfs courses or wave pools and bowling alleys .

    As to going out we have been out many times, and have never felt unsafe. Uncomfortable for sure but not unsafe.
    Because of the complete language gap and completely foreign script, one can feel overwhelmed quickly.. And you cannot rely on someone being able to help u as many cannot understand English. Guessing that happens in China too though

    Hope that answers some questions
     
  8. smee82 Well Known Member Member

    Jake98 I would never consider becoming a chinese citizen I love being an aussie to much. Ive met a heap of people that come out for a year for a holiday and to save some money.
     
  9. Thai Aquarium owner Well Known Member Member

    Hi Smee !
    Yes I am still in Thailand, and I hope that you are doing well.
    My life has been a tad busy of late - nothing important, just a multitude of small things that seem to take for ever to get sorted out here due to the " Thainess factor " as we Expats call it here.
    I also had to take a trip back to the UK early in March to renew my passport, ( long story ) ,and really, I dont want to go back there so often.
    My life is here now with my wife and daughter, and although there are issues, all in all its better than the UK
     
  10. NCE12940 Well Known Member Member

    I was supposed to be an expat but everything fell apart! I even built a house in Kidal, Mali (West Africa). Unfortunately some of the Tuaregs and others decided to start a rebellion. Things are still unsettled / unsafe and I'll probably never be able to live in my house but will have to sell it. So I'm stuck in horrible West Texas instead!
     
  11. Lucy Moderator Moderator Member

    This is a very interesting thread guys.

    Isn't it wonderful that we can learn so much from each other (and not just about fish :))
     
  12. smee82 Well Known Member Member

    Thai Aquarium owner Sounds like the Chinese way as we call it here. I got a new passport too at the beginning of the year which was surprisingly simple in china but changing all of my other Chinese documents so they have the passport number on them has been a chore. Its been 9 months since i got the new one and its still not done, I still have to change my residential registration and 1 more of my bank accounts. The bank keeps claiming the old me and the new me are not the same person and i have to pay to open a new account.
    NCE12940 Thats no good but i guess its better to be somewhere safe then in a war zone.
     
  13. NCE12940 Well Known Member Member

    True smee82! It's a hassle living here but there'd be more hassles in Mali.
     
  14. Thai Aquarium owner Well Known Member Member

    Because of the close proximity to China, there a many people of Chinese decent here.
    In Spain, its called " manyana - tommorrow " but here, it has no real name and is next week.
    Frustrating at times to say the least.
    @ NCE - Dont loose sight of your dreams, wars dont usually last forever.
    @ Lucy - If people have never lived in other countries and become expats, they really dont know the true picture of life in that country.
    Believe me when I say its nothing like the rose tinted glasses aspect you have on a holiday
     
  15. NCE12940 Well Known Member Member

    Very true! It's totally different and you experience the culture in a way that you couldn't do on a holiday. As for me, I'm getting too old and decrepit after 4 years away to be able to live there (Sahara desert) full-time again.
     
  16. Thai Aquarium owner Well Known Member Member

    @NCE
    There is no such thing as getting too old, and if its your dream, live it - we are only here once !.
    Why not become a fi-fo ?
    My T-shirt says " getting old but refusing to grow up "
     
  17. smee82 Well Known Member Member

    Being too old isn't an excuse to not go its an excuse to go. Your too old not to do what might make you happy it doesn't matter if its a trip halfway around the world or to the corner store for an ice cream.
     
  18. NCE12940 Well Known Member Member

    I am going to Niger (next door to Mali) in Sept. to see how things are. It might be possible to go for short periods instead of staying there forever. I mean, I'd have to give up my fish! :p
     
  19. Thai Aquarium owner Well Known Member Member

    Hey NCE
    Good you are trying to make your dream.
    Going to Niger is a positive move, and who knows ? maybe you will get bitten by that country and want to stay, or you have the option to travel in and out ( Fi - Fo ------ Fly In - Fly out )) of Mali for short periods to enjoy your house there, as well as the the many other cultural things.
    As for your fish, that is hugely regretable, but somethings in life are more important than fish.
    Whatever you choose to do, I wish you well
     
  20. NCE12940 Well Known Member Member

    Thanks Thai Aquarium owner & Smee82! That's why I might do - part-time desert rat :cool: Or, if my cheri can ever get a visa, he can live part-time here. Thinking of Thailand - have you read any of the Bangkok number series mysteries? First one is Bangkok 8 I believe. Love them. There's also a mystery series set in China - an American woman and a Chinese man; don't remember author or titles though!