11th August marks the day that I moved from the UK to America 1 year ago. What a rollercoaster ride it has been. Just call me a yoyo because I swear I have been up and down more times than a little…and I’m still partly living out of a suitcase…! Here’s a look at my first year living the expat life.
Visits home to the UK basically involve me just pigging out on all the food that I miss now that I live in the States. This is also a question I get asked a lot as an expat! Some things I CAN get in the USA, such as Marmite, scones (in the form of packet mix sent over in the mail) and Cadburys chocolate. However there are some things I can’t get (or I’m yet to find!).
There’s no hiding the fact that us Brits like to have a good moan. But sometimes you don’t always really realise how good you had it until it’s gone. This is definitely the case since emigrating to America, I took things in the UK for granted and now I’d do anything to get them back!
I was born in England, I lived there for 28 years, I am British. So how comes when I emigrated to America, I feel like I’ve become even more British…if that’s even possible? It’s like the longer I’m away, the more British I become. Maybe it’s that I’ve become more patriotic? As soon as I open my mouth and people realise I’m not a local, it’s like I become a British ambassador, answering their questions, telling them what it’s like to live there. But then I’m also surrounding myself with little things that remind me of home, I guess trying to create myself a miniature England.
When I moved to America I thought I’d never get to have a British cream tea ever again. Then Dubuque decided to throw out one better, a FULL English Afternoon Tea experience at the Inspire Cafe in the historic Millwork District! The Afternoon Tea tradition dates back to the 1800s. They usually include: a pot of tea, finger sandwiches, cake and scones (cream teas are smaller and only have scones and tea). When my American family came over for our wedding in the UK, we took them to a tea room for an English Cream Tea and we even served it at our wedding reception!
I literally can’t say enough positive words about Distinctively Dubuque! As a new expat in America, discovering this course couldn’t have come at a better time! It is a completely FREE programme run by Greater Dubuque Development and the Northeast Iowa Community College and is aimed at people who have been living in the Dubuque district for 5 years or less.
You may have noticed that I’m slightly obsessed with my Fitbit Flex. Now more than ever because I signed up for Run The Year, a just for fun fitness challenge with the aim of walking/running/hiking 2,017 miles in 2017! To put this into perspective, to complete this alone, it would mean doing 5.5miles (13,000 steps) EVERYDAY for the whole year! Don’t worry, you can also sign up with a buddy and complete the challenge as part of a team!
Now I’m living in America, I read a lot of expat blogs! I find it really interesting reading other people’s experiences and it’s great connecting with other people that are going through a similar thing to what I am (it really is a very weird feeling being an expat!). I was recently tagged in a post by Sandra at Going American, a fellow European now living in Boston, USA and thought it’d be fun to answer her questions about my expat life experience!