Expat to Expat Q&A: November

Posted In: Expat to Expat | okinawa

Before the end of the month i wanted to take the time to answer this month’s Expat to Expat questions by Belinda of Found Love, Now What? and Bailie of The Hemborg Wife. I always enjoy sitting down and answering some questions about my expat life, as well as reading the answers of other expats.

1. What advice would you give to your pre-expat self? 

If i could give advice to my pre-expat self i would say to go out and explore my home turf. When you move to a new country you yearn to learn and explore. After doing this for a whole year i’ve realized how little i explored Puerto Rico. But who can blame me, i lived there my entire life and because of this i could never figure out anything fun to do, everything seemed boring. Sometimes i find myself regretting this. Instead of staying at home or visiting the mall, i wish i would’ve taken the time to explore the wonders that Puerto Rico has to offer. 

We’re not sure if we’re ever going to move back home, but i do know that whenever we visit we will take advantage of exploring new places. 

2. How do you reconcile what you thought life would be like in your new home and is it in actuality? ie. did you think you would be fluent in your new language and you are struggling with the basics. 

To be honest when i heard the news about us moving to Japan i freaked out a bit. When you think of Japan, you see a very traditional culture, a completely different language, and a lot of unknowns. In reality, Okinawa is different to mainland Japan and i am grateful for this. It reminds us so much of Puerto Rico and because of this i can honestly say this island has my heart. The culture shock wasn’t that bad because we felt at home so easily. The whole island mentality, the beaches, the weather, the crazy driving, the shaved ice, all of these things, big or small reminded us of home. 

Like the example above, I really thought i would take the time to learn the language but in reality i’m not that disciplined; although i know enough to be courteous. I still wish to learn and i’m fine with not learning to read or write it, but would love to learn how to speak it a little bit more. 

Found Love.  Now What?