Nina is a thirty-something girl who’s lived in thirty-something places. She moved abroad for her job, for her husband’s job and just for the fun of it.
She has a background in luxury travel sector (more on her Blog). We asked Nina some questions:
What is the hardest part of living abroad or moving all the time?
For lots of people the hardest part is uprooting their children and separating them from their friends and family but in our case, our children are young and seem quite happy with the new adventures. We also travel a lot so we are always visiting family all over the world.
The hardest part for me is the logistical side. While we have had relocation companies to help, for the most part, I still need to ‘direct operations’, pack wisely and plan carefully. At one stage I had suitcases labeled ‘York’, ‘London’, ‘Barcelona’, ‘Tokyo’ and ‘Lausanne’.
Of all the places you have been to, which one is your favorite and why?
For me, it has to be Antwerp in Belgium.
It’s the kind of city you visit first and wonder what all the fuss is about, but after a few months, you begin to understand. Fabulous designer boutique, innovative restaurants, cycle lanes everywhere and a culture quite similar to the British one (at least Antwerp people seem to get British irony!). It also helps that I made a lot of friends here, so, despite the constant rain, it felt very much like home.
What are the reasons for choosing your next destinations?
The first factors are my children. I ask myself ‘will be children be happy, healthy and safe?’ If the answer is yes, then for me the country is worth a look at.
Then I like to look at how long we plan to be there. If it’s for a few months I’m very flexible, but if we’re looking for something more long term then I’d prefer a place with a bit of a buzz to it.
What are the most interesting or useful things that you learned abroad?
Life skills such as how to make friends quickly, the importance of staying in touch with the people you love, and not to let negative feelings take hold.
And how to chill a bottle of wine without a fridge, how to open it without a corkscrew and use the lid to start a car.