Solange Berchemin was born in Lyon, France and spent her childhood gliding between two very very different cultural backgrounds. Her maternal grandparents emigrated from Morocco, her paternal family is deeply rooted in a very small village near Lyon.
She moved to London on a trial base, for a year or two, 20 years later she has become a London expert with a unique insider perspective. She loves this fascinating city, its quirkiness, its buzz, its cultural diversity. She finds it impossible to tire of a city which keeps offering places she has never been.
As her passion for travels grew she came to be a Tour Guide. She travelled the world for work or for the pleasure of discovering new cultures before turning to education. She worked as Head of Languages for one of London largest college. Nowadays she reports and writes about what she knows best.
Justine Bayod Espoz is a native of Chicago, Illinois (USA) who moved to Madrid, Spain in March 2005 to work as a cultural journalist and Spanish/English translator. Born to a Chilean father and a Spanish mother, Justine visited Spain many times throughout her childhood, but it wasn’t until her junior year abroad with the Tufts-Skidmore in Madrid program that she fell in love with the Spanish capital. Ever since that year, she knew that there was nowhere else she’d rather live.
Justine has BA’s in Spanish and English Literature from Smith College. She began her career in journalism and editing as a journalist for Hot English Magazine while studying in Spain. Following her graduation from Smith, she became the Editor of BeTuitive Publishing, an e-marketing company in Chicago. Upon moving to Madrid, she became the Editor-in-Chief of MAP Magazine, a position that she left to begin her own bilingual content creation agency ToritoMedia. Justine has published articles about Spanish culture in online and print magazines around the world, including Art Monthly Australia, Dance Europe, Dance International and Dance Magazine, to name a few.
Margot Bigg had her first experience living abroad when she was just three years old, when she (and her parents) moved from Portland, Oregon (USA) to her father’s native England. She later moved to Paris, where she completed an MA in Contemporary European Studies from Sciences Po before finally shifting her base to Delhi in January 2007.
A professional journalist, Margot has written for a number of publications in India and abroad, including Rolling Stone, Time Out, Outlook Traveller, the Times of India, and the Oregonian. She’s also the author of the Moon Guide to Living Abroad in India, a comprehensive guidebook for expats planning to move to India.
Denis Burke became an Amsterdam resident after several visits. He has lived in the city for three years; first as a student, later as a writer and now in communications in the non-government sector. Originally from Dublin, Ireland, Denis has traveled all over North America, Europe, and Asia. He has written for several travel guides with pieces about far away places and the differing social and lifestyle issues in different parts of the world. Following the completion of his masters degree in Amsterdam he began writing about international affairs. Why does Denis love Amsterdam? The work-hard, play-hard mentality, the rich cultural life, and the opportunity to cycle home every day along breath-taking canals.
Born in Canada, Laura lived in Toronto, Ottawa, and Vancouver before realizing that Canada (large as it is) was a mere speck in a much larger landscape. She has since travelled through forty countries, calling Puerto Vallarta, Mexico City, Paris, Delhi and Chennai home before finally settling in Bangalore, her husband's hometown, in 2009.
Laura has worked in communications for over a decade, and has a Masters in Publishing under her belt. She now runs a publishing consultancy with her husband between Bangalore, India and Vancouver, Canada.
Though not always obvious to the newly arrived guest, Laura, like most steadfast residents, has warmed to the camouflaged charms and hospitality of Bangalore and is a big fan of South India’s buzzing metropolis.
Merryn Calear is a seasoned traveller. As a former dancer, Merryn worked around the globe and lived in both Japan and England. Her favourite travel experiences have been in Asia, namely Vietnam and Japan. She has returned to her birth place Sydney, where she divides her time writing, working in film and television and swimming at Coogee beach. Merryn Calear still enjoys dance and performance and has developed an interest in aerial arts. Merryn is passionate about the Sydney local arts scene and this is demonstrated in her involvement as President of Inner City Arts.
Born in Ireland and raised in London, John Callely was dragged to Cape Town at the tender age of 18 to live under the strict roof of an irate German stepfather. Five years later, a little tougher, a lot browner, and with a much expanded mind, he's a happily integrated South African citizen, and works as a writer, editor and entrepreneur. He lives in Cape Town's Central Business District, and despite a few encounters with the darker sides of the city, maintains that he wouldn't live anywhere else.
Los Angeles, Californian native Lisa Canfield launched her career writing advertising for television shows, and teamed with her husband Joel to run their own Hollywood promo agency, which they aptly named "joined at the hip". In 2005 they relocated to New Zealand with sons David, now 15, and AJ, now 13, after Lisa saw New Zealand on TV’s “The Amazing Race” and became obsessed with it. Lisa and her family currently live in the St Heliers area of Central Auckland, where, from their bedroom deck, they can actually see a dormant-yet-active volcano rising from the sea. They relaunched their company as a full-service freelance writing service, working on everything from websites to ebooks to marketing campaigns from their downstairs office. They also founded and run the Central City Baseball Club, one of only six youth baseball clubs in the entire country. Lisa loves Auckland for the clean air, the mild climate, and above all else, the ocean.
Entrepreneur, author, professor, international business executive, and industry consultant, Dr. William Coon brings a diversified background to any endeavor. He has conducted business in more than 110 countries and has written thirty international business case studies, many of which are currently being used in graduate business schools in the United States. Dr. Coon has conducted business in China since 1978 and has lived in Shanghai for the past four years. He has also lived in Germany, Argentina, and Brazil.
As a professor at Washington University’s John M. Olin School of Business, Dr. Coon taught numerous MBA courses such as Foreign Market development, International Marketing Management, and Global Management Studies. He contributed to textbooks on international economics, strategic management, and international business. He currently consults with several multinational companies that do business in China, as well as teaching MBA courses at Chinese, English, and American universities.
Jeff De Maria was born in the Southern California and spent his childhood exploring the beaches near his home and travelling the Southwestern states with his family in their camper. A year spent studying abroad in Brisbane, Australia during University introduced Jeff to the wonders of international travel and inspired him to spend the better part of a decade exploring the globe and documenting his travels.
Having lived and worked abroad in Japan and Australia, Jeff has experienced firsthand the challenges of being a newly arrived expat in a strange land. He currently lives with his wife in their favourite city, Melbourne, where he works as a communications consultant and writer for Australian government agencies. When he’s not writing or navigating the perilous channels of bureaucracy, he enjoys drinking with mates in the afternoon, exploring the city’s laneways for new street art, and travelling to areas of Australia with funny names.
Scott Ezell studied English and Chinese at the University of California. After graduating from university he went to Taiwan to continue studying Chinese and ended up traveling and living a dozen years in Asia, including China, Japan, Vietnam, India and Indonesia. In Asia he has worked as a writer, editor, radio show host, and record producer, and has published work in newspapers and magazines such as the Kyoto Journal, That’s Beijing, the Taipei Times and Chan Magazine.
Scott Ezell traveled in Vietnam for one month in 2004 and was enchanted by the landscape, people and cultural texture of the country. Interested in questions of individual and cultural identity, in 2008 he settled in Hanoi, the cultural and artistic capital of Vietnam. He continues to explore and write about what lies beneath the surface of Vietnamese society, and performs music with local artists in Hanoi. Scott Ezell’s poetry book “Petroglyph Americana” will be published in the Fall of 2009, and his travel book “The End of China” will be published in 2010, both in the United States.
Shannon Frandsen has lived on three different continents and knows well the struggles and pleasures of life abroad.
Her travel adventures kicked off when winning an essay contest took her on a pilgrimage in Spain. A few months later, with a passion for traveling confirmed, she returned to her home country to work as a travel consultant in Boston. But talking about seeing the world wasn't enough.
She packed up her life (which fit into one suitcase), flew to Japan, and waited to see what would happen. A series of strange and wonderful events brought her to Scotland and then to Holland, where she met the man of her dreams. One wedding and one baby later, Shannon and her new family made a sudden move to India, just to keep things interesting.
Shannon now lives in Mumbai with her husband and their two-year old Danish-American daughter. She makes regular contributions to newsletters and websites about expat life in Mumbai.
Marcos Mallada graduated in journalism at the Complutense University of Madrid and started his international experience in Rome, where he studied one year at La Sapienza University. He spent another year in Edinburgh, where he tried to improve his English while he was making around one million coffees and being way too cold. He returned to Madrid looking for the sun and worked as editor, writing about almost anything you can imagine: politics, immigration issues, football, road transport, sports sponsorship, economics, crime, basketball, music… After a short stay in Milano as translator, he arrived to Shanghai four years ago. It was supposed to be a one year internship in international trade, but he still doesn’t know what to answer when his relatives in Spain ask “when are you going to come back?” In the Chinese city, that he swears is more Mediterranean than Naples and Athens together, he works as freelance trader and writer. He has also published a guide of the city for the Spanish Instituto Cervantes.
Born and raised overseas, Vivian Grace James relocated to Canada in 2007 in order to pursue post-secondary studies at the University of British Columbia (UBC). She currently lives in Vancouver with her husband, son, and two dogs, and is studying at both UBC and Oregon State University.
Because Vivian grew up overseas in diverse places such as Asia and the Middle East, Vancouver holds a curious fascination for her with its blend of cultures and traditions. She fell in love with the city from afar, and now never tires of exploring its unique features and attractions together with her family.
The rest of the time Vivian can be found pouring over her books, papers, and laptop, busily engaged in writing or studying. Among her interests is the archaeology of the ancient Near East, and she is a member of the Archaeological Institute of America. Vivian has been involved in off-season archaeological digs. She is also interested in literature, philosophy, religion, and natural medicine, as well as being deeply committed to green initiatives, sustainability, and natural living.
Nowhere are these ideals more strongly pursued than in Vancouver and Vivian endeavors to uphold these values by purchasing local and organic food, implementing strategies for green living (including recycling), and joining the local community in promoting natural and sustainable living.
Jesse Green relocated to Japan with his expat parents (who continue to make their home in Japan having lived here for nearly 30 years) when he was a small child, before moving back to the U.S. as a teenager. He returned to Tokyo in 2001 and has lived in the city ever since. A marketing and public relations consultant, he is married to his beautiful wife Rebecca who is an environmental energy consultant in Yokohama (a coastal city just south of Tokyo). “Tokyo is a truly amazing city with so much to offer, no matter what your interests are,” he says. “And with constant development and increasing internationalization, Tokyo’s face is sure to continue to change for the better. It’s difficult imagining living elsewhere with so many conveniences, sporting events, and incredible gastronomic experiences. It’s simply a wonderful place to live.”
Erik Hamre was born and raised in Copenhagen, Denmark where he lived until he graduated from Copenhagen University with a Bachelors Degree in Economics. After graduating, he set out for adventure, seeking warmer climates than his native country through backpacking and traveling around South East Asia. In the process of exploring everything the region has to offer, he discovered Thailand and was enthralled by its unique culture, friendly people and organized chaos. After returning home and finding the Danish winter much too long and cold he returned to Thailand in 2007, making Bangkok his home.
Erik has worked as a teacher, SEO consultant and freelance travel writer in Bangkok and is currently pursuing his Masters Degree in Business Administration at Ramkhamhaeng University, Thailand's largest educational institution.
Out of the classroom Erik enjoys diving in Thailand's crystal clear blue waters, hitting the Muay Thai boxing pads and spending a night out with friends in the popular Ekamai clubs.
Born and bred in Singapore, Caryn Yeo has been calling Hong Kong home for more than six years. A full-time journalist, she spends her most of her waking hours in the pressure cooker of a newsroom or holed up with her other half in their cozy closet-sized apartment. Whatever spare time she has, she relaxes by experiencing all the different facets of life in Hong Kong: getting a million-dollar view of the city's skyline from the Star Ferry, taking in the cool evening breeze while riding the trams that trundle along Hong Kong Island, tucking into delicious local dishes at noisy roadside eateries, and browsing for kitschy trinkets at the bustling, vibrant night markets. She constantly marvels at Hong Kong's ever-present buzz of humanity, the infectious energy of its people, and most of all, at how everything works without reason (and without apparent clarity) in this dynamo of a city.
Schuyler House is an avid world traveler, mother of three, and multi-faceted professional with a varied background in business and academia. Her work experiences span the United States, Japan, and Southeast Asia, and her love of travel, culture, and adventure fuels her great fondness of expatriate life. Born and raised in Singapore to an American expatriate family, Schuyler grew up in the ever-shifting world of overseas living and has cultivated a keen understanding of both the joys and trials facing expatriate families. After secondary school and university in the United States, Schuyler returned to living in Asia, eventually settling again in Singapore, where she currently resides with her family.
Maggie has been living in Buenos Aires as an English teacher and a freelance writer since 2009. She came to the city from Austin, Texas where she worked in the tumultuous world of state politics, to strengthen her Spanish and have a better understanding of the Latin American culture and politics in Argentina. She has traveled throughout the country, but remains rooted in the city with its vast cafes, milongas, and parrillas. Sitting at a corner cafe, sipping a café con leche and snacking on a medialuna (croissant), she enjoys watching the porteños stroll by in their colorful clothes, listening to their sing-song dialects, and reflecting on the journey these people have taken since their families immigrated from Europe not so many decades ago. She sips contentedly wondering what the future holds for them and their country, as she goes along with them.
Born in the UK, and raised amongst the lush New Forest scenery, Amanda Jackson has been inspired to write poetry, lyrics and scripts since a very young age.
Amanda first travelled to Auckland in 2002, initially for a holiday visiting family. Whilst here Amanda was offered a job which led to a residency visa. Amanda flew back to the UK in mid-2003 to sell her house and at this point, there was no turning back - the move became permanent. Within a year Amanda's parents had also made the move to NZ, settling in Whangarei, a few hours north of Auckland.
Amanda has been in Auckland since relocating to New Zealand, living in various suburbs including Newmarket, Parnell and Mt. Eden, all of which have their own unique character and charm. Amanda now owns her own slice of heaven in Beach Haven on the North Shore which she shares with two gorgeous beagles, a beach and a native reserve.
Phoebe Jamieson relocated from Australia to Germany in 2008 with her husband and daughter. Becoming an expat in Berlin meant navigating the German immigration system, which is notoriously challenging, frustrating and ridged. However, the chance to live in this vibrant, fascinating and cultural melting pot far outweighed any obstacles encountered. Choosing Berlin was a logical choice: the lifestyle, the opportunity for travel and the chance for their daughter to be immersed in a new language and culture. The fact that Berlin is one of Europe’s most affordable capital cities has provided Phoebe with the chance to step out of her corporate life in advertising and focus on family, life and writing.
Rachel Jones was born in London and lived there until 2006 when she decided to move to Thailand to set up a bar/restaurant with her husband. She first came to Thailand in 2002 to work with elephants and immediately fell in love with the country. She continued to travel back and forth until she eventually took the decision to live there permanently.
After spending time in Bangkok, Rachel moved up to Chiang Mai where she now divides her time between working as a freelance writer and editor and running a bar/restaurant with her husband. In her free time Rachel runs an Asian elephant charity.
Gulnar Joshi is a professional writer and editor who has been editing magazines for over 15 years through various positions such as Copy Editor, Features Editor, Editor and Redesign Editor.
She loves travelling and has lived in many Indian cities including Mumbai, Chandigarh and Delhi. Gulnar has also lived and worked as an expat in Mexico (Queretaro), Germany (Munich/Wurzburg) and the Philippines (Makati).
Vicky Li Yip is an American who has been living in Beijing for three years and counting. She and her husband are expecting their first child at the end of 2009, which they are happy to deliver in their adopted new “home” city of Beijing. Vicky’s favorite place to take visitors is the Great Wall at Mutianyu, a preferred section of the wall given the thrilling toboggan ride that climbers can take back down to the base. She also loves the “real bits” of life that Beijing offers, like traditional local parks awash in colors during the spring, constant new restaurant discoveries that satisfy any food craving, and a close-knit community who can share this experience with her. Vicky has been involved in the expat community through her work at an international school, her writing for English-language publications, and her participation at an international church in the city.
Ginger Liu is a British expat who has lived in Los Angeles for more than two years. Her family, on her father’s side, comes from a long line of expatriates. Her Chinese grandfather was an expatriate in the UK and later in the USA at the turn of the 20th century. Her grandmother was a British expat living in the USA and later in China. Ginger Liu’s father and aunt left China after 1946 and they too became expatriates living in the UK and USA respectively. In the 1960's Ginger's family became expatriates after moving to the USA for a few years. Encouraged by her father’s internationalism and her mother’s tenacity, she studied media at University in London, backpacking across the USA in her summer holidays. After her father passed away, she traveled the world and decided to relocate to the USA. Ginger is a freelance writer in LA. Her articles on film, TV, music, art, travel, lifestyle, and food have appeared in numerous LA based web magazines. She is an entertainment columnist for Regent Media and a blogger for Pocket Change LA. Ginger Liu is also a LA event photographer and occasionally covers Hollywood red carpet events. Her blog, LA From The Apartment the Size of My Ass, is packed with entertainment news and interviews.
Janine MacLean was born in a small farming community in Eastern Canada. She grew up on a farm, but always dreamed of travelling to far off lands and would spend hours poring over her outdated globe and watching National Geographic documentaries. She received her Bachelor's Degree in Political Science from Acadia University in Nova Scotia, Canada and immediately moved to the Seoul area (Suwon, to be exact) to teach English as a second language and fulfill her dream to see the world.
During her two years in Korea she has travelled extensively throughout East and Southeast Asia, but is always happy to come "home" to Seoul and enjoys writing about her experiences in her blog "Getting My Suwon".
Her ideal day in Seoul includes grabbing a coffee and taking her camera for a walk around the Hongdae and Insadong areas (there's always something to see!), heading to Myeongdong or Gangnam for some window shopping and then, as the sun goes down, going to the market areas of Namdaemun or Dongdaemun for some amazing Korean street food. Finally, a few drinks by Cheonggyecheon- a beautifully restored stream near the City Hall- with some great friends makes her perfect day complete.
Although being a native from Lyon (France), Veronique Martin-Place defines herself as a world citizen and an experienced expatriate woman. Indeed, she has been relocated four times around the globe in less than ten years. She has been living in Chicago since July 2008. Veronique really enjoys Chicago because of its location on the shore of Lake Michigan that allows a lot of outdoor activities. She also appreciates the fact that Chicago has an extensive public transport system, numerous parks and playgrounds scattered all around the city, and a lot of activities and events targeting families and children.
In 2009, Veronique decided to launch her portable career in the writing and editing industry. She specializes on topics such as expatriation, travel, France and French culture. Through her website http://www.writerforever.com Veronique provides freelance writing services such as article and guide writing, editing and book reviews for online magazines, medium and small publishing companies as well as individuals.
Elizabeth Milovidov fell in love with France and all things French when she was a little girl growing up in California. And although she couldn't speak French, she knew that the study of anything combined with the word 'international' would help her get to Europe. So with a BA in international economics, an MA in Poli Sci, and a JD, she hit the trenches in the legal field, dreaming of international law. After a 4 year stint in a Californian law firm, she made the jump to Paris and has lived and worked - as in-house counsel - for the past 16 years. She now teaches business law courses and writes part-time. And - oh yeah - she learned French and even has dual nationality!
When initially confronted with the option of moving to Amsterdam, Filippos had a vague idea of what to expect. He did not, however, have any knowledge of the Dutch language or Dutch way of living. After arriving at just 18 years old, he was lost in Amsterdam. He found himself in a city free from rules, where drugs, prostitution and euthanasia are all acceptable. He had to manage his way through the trials of living in a new place, discover the city, and solve the mystery called Amsterdam.
Fortunately he was not alone; he was accompanied by his dog "Oia". The two of them made new friends, especially on walks through Vondelpark. Together, they travelled around the Netherlands, meeting new people and getting to know the Dutch culture. Three years later, the city feels not just like a place where he studied, but more like a second home. His next stop will be Barcelona to continue his studies, but he often says in a nostalgic tone "Amsterdam, I'll be back!" -- and he will be.
Imogen Moore is a freelance writer based in Melbourne, Australia. Her relocation to Barcelona happened almost by accident, after she and her daughter set off on a European adventure. The adventure turned into a settlement and the pair are now officially expatriates - at least for the time being.
Imogen has quickly and enthusiastically adopted the Spanish traditions of long lunches followed by siesta, declaring them to be the most civilised inventions of the human race. Although she finds the endless red tape of Spanish protocol to be frustrating at times, she thinks it's worth it. There is nowhere in the world quite like Spain, and certainly nowhere in Spain like Catalunya.
She has also penned The Expats Guide to Melbourne and spends her free time sampling Cava varieties and trying to improve her poor Catalan.
Sarah Moore was born in a small town in the North West of England, near Manchester. In August 2007, after a successful career spanning seven years across major blue chip companies, she resigned in order to throw caution to the wind and follow her dreams of living in Asia— she hasn't looked back since.
After living in Hong Kong for two and a half years she relocated to Singapore where she is now facing the daunting, yet exciting, task of making the city her own.
She is the proud founder of Global Art Limited— a Hong Kong registered publication agency— which owns a professional writing services site (vappingo.com); an SEO optimization services blog (searchengineswebsite.com) and a boutique publication house that provides more personalized editing and writing services.
In her spare time she likes to spend time with her dog, Spongebob, and loves nothing more than a cold drink in any bar that is willing to permit her entry.
Chris is a freelance writer who first arrived in Buenos Aires early in 2010. A graduate of Temple University, he has reviewed a wide range of literary publications for NewPages.com, and his fiction has been given honorable mention by Glimmer Train Stories. He also blogs about his travels and art ventures at The Uncanny Valley.
Chris currently divides his time between Buenos Aires and Philadelphia, PA, USA. When not in his adopted home in Latin America, he admits to a longing for Fernet with Coke, alfajores with dulce de leche, and the chirping of the parrots in Parque Lezama.
Anjeeta Nayar is professional freelance writer and blogger who is based in New York City. She relocated to New York City in 2005 from her hometown of Mumbai, India after getting married. Having lived in a big city environment all her life, she thoroughly enjoys the hustle and bustle and fast pace of life in New York City and is quite reluctant to leave the city, much to her husband’s dismay.
Anjeeta especially enjoys the fact that nearly all of New York City is extremely well connected by an extensive public transport system. Unlike other US cities, owning a car in New York is a luxury not a necessity. Moreover she says that when you ride the subways and buses in New York City, you get chance to interact with other residents of the city, something that is not possible when you are compelled to drive everywhere. She also enjoys attending the various year round cultural and entertainment extravaganzas that are held in the city and sampling the offerings of the numerous restaurants that dot the culinary landscape of this great city.
Born and raised in Osaka, Japan, Miki Onuma came to Los Angeles originally as a student, with an intention of going home after completing her sociology studies in college. Now she finds herself still living in Los Angeles after a couple of decades. She has also lived in Philadelphia, PA and St. Petersburg, FL before settling down and calling LA her second home. An avid traveler and adventurer at heart, she loves visiting exotic places and trying out new foods and cultures, which she enjoys whether she is on vacation somewhere or on her own home turf. Miki is a freelance writer as well as a Japanese/English translator and has penned several children’s books, essays and literature. Now as a mother of two, she re-lives the City of Angeles all over again.
Aarthi Rajaraman is a freelance writer and producer based out of Barcelona, Spain. About six years ago, Aarthi was in Paris on work assignment and ended up meeting her future husband, Fernando, a Catalan! Their long-distance romance led to her subsequent relocation to Barcelona, and she has since been based out of this European port.
As an expat living and working out of Spain, Aarthi has experienced her fair share of trials and tribulations. However, despite these challenges (and there have been many!) there is no other city she would rather call home. Barcelona is her favorite European city in terms of quality of life, and she finds that the Catalan people have managed to discover that perfect balance between work and play.
In addition to her contribution to The Expats Guide to Barcelona, Aarthi teaches at the European University and IESE (in Barcelona) and serves as a freelance producer for ESPN.
Kaitlin studied English at Williams College in Massachusettes. The wonderful and challenging students she encountered in her first three years out of college in teaching high school in Brooklyn, NY made her realize how little she knew and how much she wanted to shake up the snow globe of her world view. In February of 2011 she moved to Vietnam.
This would be a place, she hoped, that would turn everything she thought upside down. After spending a few months in Ho Chi Minh City, it was the rumored art scene, culture, and proximity to mountains that drew her up north to Hanoi. While freelancing, she spent one year behind the desk at Vietnam News as a copy editor, escaping to the mountains as much as possible. She currently serves as the features editor of the city's Word magazine, a job that feeds, and feeds off of, her love for the lifestyles and people of Hanoi. Kaitlin is also the organizer and curator of a series of poetry readings and spoken word events that draw from the talented community of local and ex-pat writers.
Tom Rogers was born in Nottingham, England and is a seasoned expatriate who has lived and worked in Moscow for 2 years. After graduating in economics he decided to pursue his dreams of travel and adventure and worked in Spain and China before eventually succumbing to the charms and challenges of life in the biggest country in the world. He now works as a university teacher and writes about a range of subjects.
His favourite summer activity in Moscow is to take a trip out to a country house and indulge in the Russian delicacies of barbecued meat, strong vodka and great friends. In winter, like the Muscovites, he prefers to spend as little time outside as possible.
Joanne Roxburgh was born and brought up in the UK. She has been living in Dubai with her family for almost seven years, working as a teacher at a university for local Emiratis. She loves communicating and has also been working as a freelance writer for many years. She has written English-language textbooks and exams, primary school textbooks and online teaching materials.
Dubai feels like home now and, with all that the city has to offer, Joanne never feels homesick. Her children were born in Turkey but have spent most of their lives in Dubai. They attend an international school based on the British curriculum and enjoy taking part in the many activities that are available for expat children.
Having "been there and done that", Joanne is well-equipped to provide practical information to new expats relocating to Dubai. However, in this constantly changing city, she had to carry out a lot of research to make sure the guide was as up-to-date as possible. The pace of change is so fast that one law changed while she was in the process of writing the guide!
Patricia Sanderlin, a German native, has lived in Houston since 1995. Texas is a beautiful state with a classic western charm and, once upon a time, she didn't want to stay in Houston longer than necessary. Now one of her sayings is "You don't move to Houston because you love it, you stay in Houston because you have grown to love it." It seems a lot of other people feel the same as this 4th largest city of the U.S. has consistently been expanding over the years. It is a multi-cultural and very friendly city that welcomes people with a mix of southern charm and a small-town attitude. After obtaining her Bachelor Degree at the University of Houston Downtown, she now enjoys Houston because of the long Texas coast summers, being able to ride horses, exercising in the vast amount of beautiful parks, exploring areas around Houston on the weekends, spending relaxing time at the coast in Galveston and the Bolivar Peninsula and attending the various year-round entertainment and sporting events in this fun big city.
Rebekah Smith is a young, self-made American expatriate who left her home in Alaska just under a year ago, heading to Moscow in pursuit of love. A long-time student of Russian, she had previously studied and temporarily worked in Russia, but had already given up on a dream of living there. However, when she found herself madly in love with a Muscovite, it seemed it was time for this dream to come true after all. She convinced a technical writing firm to hire its first-ever expatriate, and navigated with them through all the trials involved. She is eternally grateful to her fiance and his family for providing her the support she needed on her way to and in Moscow, and hopes this guide will help pass on the same insights and advice to help you feel secure, knowledgeable, and at home when you make your new life in this amazing city.
Jim Taylor is a comedic performer and writer who moved to Toronto from Winnipeg, Manitoba in 2001. He is a former member of the acclaimed Second City comedy company, and an award winning television writer. He has been living in Toronto for the past 8 years and loves living in such a vibrant, exciting city filled with warm-hearted caring citizens.
Christie Vanorsdale is from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She was raised in a small town two hours south, but moved to the city when she was fifteen. She studied psychology and sociology in university and landed a job as a recruiter for a job placement agency after graduation. She always knew that she was meant for greater things, so in 2008 she over-packed her Grandfather's vintage suitcase and landed in Seoul. Three years of teaching, eating, shopping and "living the dream" in the “Land of the Morning Calm", has shown her that anything is possible.
Being fully submerged in a culture that is both incredibly modern and age-old at the same time has been quite the experience. Long walks along the Cheonggyecheon River, the cherry blossom festival on Yeoido Island, and late night street food are just a few of her favorite things. She also enjoys visiting the many museums in the city, watching live music in Hongdae, and writing short stories in one of Seoul's many cafes. She has also traveled abundantly throughout Asia and the Mediterranean and is planning to move to Istanbul in the summer of 2011.
When initially confronted with the option of moving to Belgium, Brighton, a native of Zimbabwe, had the same reaction as many other people -- he had a hazy idea of where Belgium was, knew of Brussels, Waterloo, Antwerp, Belgian beer, chocolate, and other places and things; but not a whole lot more than that. Europe was going through a massive change at the time; introduction of the Euro, relaxing border controls, some uncertainty of exactly where Europe was going. Almost 10 years later, he finally made the plunge, albeit by way of the United States and other places, and has found Belgium to be a truly under-rated experience. Having a young family, he has been able to appreciate the massive family bonds that exist and met some truly amazing people, who have become friends for life. He has been able to experience first-hand some of the many sublime characteristics that make Belgium so unique. When missing home, Brighton reconnects with the many expats. He finds that the southern Africans, English and Australians and their habits, make living here just like being back at home.
Though one might suspect "a total New Yorker," Gail M. Zuckerwise stumbled into Amsterdam's wonderland as an undergraduate student in need of inspiration. After returning to Amherst College to complete her degree, she knew it was time to head back to the city that had been her muse. Four years later and nearly two degrees further, Gail's fascination with the city has only become enhanced with time and understanding. With the two-fold goal of teaching at a Dutch University and being Dutch when she grows up, Gail has no intention of turning away now, watching in awe as the city moves forward, and wondering, can it actually get any better?
Laura Zvulun's love of France may have started in New York City 15 years ago when she worked at The French Culinary Institute as the Director of Alumni Affairs. She obtained the FCI Grand Diplôme for Culinary Arts and went on to apply her culinary background to an editorial career at Food and Wine Magazine. After leaving New York to work as a Chef and Cruise Director on small ships in the Mediterranean, she and her husband settled in Paris. Five years later, Laura continues to revel in the French cuisine and culture, and more recently with the addition of her three children, the Parisian parks and playgrounds.