I stumbled across Suzie’s Blog and saw this great test so hoping she will not mind me repeating it here with my own reflections in orange…..here we go…..
22 Signs of a True Expat
1. You get cravings for silly things like Heinz ketchup and Hershey bars ; I get cravings for Scottish Kippers and the Saturday papers, fresh meat from the butcher, full cream milk, Cottee’s lemon cordial, Australian seafood – especially prawns ( I simply will not eat the bottom feeders here ) and my mum’s cooking.
2. You get grumpy about the very same things that initially drew you to your adopted home. YES….I get grumpy at my wife. When I say I want beer in the fridge 24/7 I mean it goddammit.
3. You often feel torn between two identities. NO. I know I am Australian and always will be but Cambodia is my home and where my heart is for more than just the obvious reasons.
4. You’re friends with expats, but only those who arrived around the same time as you. NO. I have a very varied group of friends. Some have been here 0ver 10 years. Some have been here one year.
5. You find newbies irritating.HELL YES. “Where do I buy a cheese grater and how much should I pay for a haircut ?” Fuck me – go out and find out yourself numbnuts.
6. You sometimes dream in a foreign language. NO but I do occasionally scream out AH JOY MAI in my dreams acording to my wife.
7. You’ve attended weddings, birthday parties and baby showers….. on Skype! NO. That sounds as gay as Facebook and Twatter. When I go to weddings and birthday parties it is in person and is so random it is not funny.
8. Your old life seems gray. I can barely remember anything pre- Cambodia. I think shrinks call that “blocking”.If life back then was gray, life now is like a massive acid trip.
9. After many iterations, you’ve finally perfected the The Ultimate Guest Tour. TRUE.
10. You pity those still stuck in corporate life.YEP!! . And I get sick of guys asking me ” I am stuck in Corporate life and I really want o move to Cambodia. Do you think i can do it ?” . I am like….geez….I worked for Merrill Lynch for years,dropped out and worked on an oyster farm and now I live in Cambodia and manage a company that maintains technical sites for a living.What do you think?
11. Your friends have become your family HELL YES. I love my friends here khmer and Barang. My crew here is the shiznit.
12. You’ve eaten things you never dreamed you would. You mean like the fried bull’s dick and water snake I had last night ?
13. You get strangely defensive when someone (who doesn’t live there) criticizes your adopted home. HELL YES. If you don’t like it here fuck off back to whence you came from. We happen to like the dirt,heat and corruption.
14. You wouldn’t be seen dead in the ‘expat bars’. If someone says ” Shall we meet at the FCC ?” I say ” mate….I would rather eat one of Sambo the elephants turds……”.
15. You’re a lot more adventurous than you used to be. NO, I have always liked nude bungy jumping.
16. When you fly back, nothing ever seems to change. I haven’t flown back.
17. You never get bored of gloating about your new life. I have never gloated but then I guess if you read my blog I like to rub stuff in people’s faces about how good we have it here.
18. You plan less and do more. Plans ?
19. You turn up late but are often early .No. I have always been punctual. If I arrange a meeting in my office here in Phnom Penh and the person is more than 20 mins late and has not rung I tell them to come back another time. The look on the face is priceless.
20. You’ve attended countless leaving parties for friends who ‘went back’. Just one and that was like a funeral it was so depressing. However I seem to find that anyone who has lived here for a few years and then leaves always comes back to visit regularly. It just gets under your skin.
21. Your family have stopped asking you when you’re coming home. Well…they are still hassling me about going back ONCE for a holiday but I think they know I am never going back to live. When I put the house up for sale in Australia that should get rammed home.
22. Home is where you are now. HELL YES. I have my wife, my child, my dog, my career, my friends. Home is Russian Market, Phnom Penh.