Expat Benefit Frauds: It’s Not Really Benefitting Us

Unless you’re one of us yourself, the world of expats is probably this big black hole of visas, tax issues, remittances and more that you can’t be bothered to concern yourself with. And I can’t blame you – expat issues aren’t something anyone would choose to read up on in their free time. However, as the world gets “flatter and flatter” and borders become more and more blurred with people working remotely and moving overseas, the number of expats is exponentially increasing.… [Read more]

Ask an Expat: I Want to Live Abroad! How Do I Do It?

A question that I often get, with slight variations of course, is: “I want to live/work/study abroad! How do I do it?”

This question is difficult to answer without more information, such as which country/countries the person is interested in moving to, what their work experience is, whether or not they want to stay in the same field, what their educational background is, whether they’re willing to switch careers/teach abroad/study abroad, etc.… [Read more]

America Gets a Star for Christmas!

Ernest at McDonalds

Flying to the US through a long route was an experience of its own kind. My first-time air travel and I had to change four planes on three international airports. Now that was just a little more than I would accommodate in for a happy travel. Yet, it was exciting – except for Emirates’ Dubai to London (UK) flight as I caught a glimpse of a worker at the Dubai airport – of dark complexion probably like an Arab-African guy – making a gesture of contempt (was it my Pakistani passport?) and pointing to his co-worker.… [Read more]

Aimless in America the 3rd

And so my tour continues further south. A day off in Orlando is pleasant but uneventful, like the city itself. I couldn’t find much to do but walk around aimlessly, occasionally getting engaged in conversation by questionable-looking people on the streets, including one dude with what looked like multiple stab scars all over his mid-section and arms.… [Read more]

Aimless in America 2

Florida’s a strange, strange place. It’s like America’s lost appendage, nearly severed but still hanging on by just a shred of skin, our southern-most point lost at sea, its tenuous connection to the mainland leaving it off in its own little world. Staring out of the train window for several hours at a time, the site of lush, brilliant-green tropical swamps punctuated by busted-looking trailer parks with the occasional Confederate flag flying high was a bit of a trip for this big-city liberal.… [Read more]

KTV: China’s Nightlife

If you are going to travel to China you need to know about the Chinese entertainment that is available to you. Although the larger cities have bars and dance clubs like most cities in the United States, the smaller cities lack this type of nightlife. However, one type of nightlife is a must in every city and town in China and on almost every corner it is KTV, better known to us as Karaoke TV.… [Read more]

Transient America

In my imminently approaching old age, I’m running out of ways to make my friends and family feel shocked, scared, confused and concerned for my mental state. 18 years of juvenile delinquency, flunking out of high school, burning through 30 jobs in fewer than 10 years, taking the “couch tour” off and on, … [Read more]

America…What’s to Like?

I left Germany earlier and I’m now in France.  Being away from home reminds me of a recent online conversation I had with a friend who is relocating; she’s leaving the United States for the next few years.  Her impending departure got us talking; I’m relaying here what I said to her about what it feels like to leave this country and what there is to like enough to want to return.… [Read more]