“We are moving.” Something I was fortunate enough to hear my Dad say a few times growing up. Born and raised in Aberdeen until 8, followed by 4 years in Sugarland, Texas, 5 years of schooling in Dubai, UAE then moving to university in Southampton, England with the added bonus of holidays in Dubai. Come October Glasgow will be home. Needless to say the question where are you from is rather confused and long-winded.
My response to my parents aged 8 was “as long as I become a cheerleader.” How I knew what cheerleading was bearing in mind we didn’t have sky or anything ‘back’ then is beyond me. Mum and Dad kept their promise with me cheering for all 4 years and eventually ending up doing it again at university.
Living abroad gave me some amazing life experiences and the ability to see so many different cultures and communities. The expat community is a small world. Without Facebook I would not be able to see what half of my friends are up to. A friend from school in America, mentioned that she would be in Glasgow last week and asked if I wanted to meet up. We both admitted to being slightly nervous about meeting up as we hadn’t seen each other in over 8 years since we last saw each other when she lived in Singapore. It was lovely meeting up with an old friend who has ended up meeting mutual friends of mine through her own expat connections. A primary school friend of mine in Aberdeen became her best friend when she finished school in Houston. As I said a small world.
The slight problem I now have is not knowing when I will see her again. She currently studies at university in Sydney so not easy to catch up for a cup of coffee! I have no doubt our paths will cross again.
Throughout Uni, I have always had itchy feet. I am so excited to see what Glasgow has in store but admittedly still want to move and work abroad. Singapore is my current dream city.
Being an expat gives you a different view on the world and has the added benefit of being able to talk to anyone as you had at one point or another been the new kid from an odd place. Michelle and I did comment that it’s hard not to come across as a brat when you say where you have lived and countries you have visited.
One of the things I miss most about Dubai is the ability to watch the fireworks on Burj beach for NYE.