Leaving Australia to live overseas.

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Total Power

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Aug 19, 2004
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the benefit of living in Europe, we are driving to Budapest and Vienna for Christmas, the budapest christmas market is one of the best i have seen across Europe! such great food, beers, wine and just a fantastic atmosphere. Really feel privileged to be living here doing that every year in different European cities.
 

Great8

Brownlow Medallist
Apr 19, 2015
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the benefit of living in Europe, we are driving to Budapest and Vienna for Christmas, the budapest christmas market is one of the best i have seen across Europe! such great food, beers, wine and just a fantastic atmosphere. Really feel privileged to be living here doing that every year in different European cities.
That’s probably the thing I miss the most along with going to the soccer most weekends
 

HotSausage69

Premium Platinum
Aug 25, 2018
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Any updates mate? Interested to hear how it’s all going still


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Apologies for the late reply.
I don't even know where to start, I couldn't possibly fit in everything I have to say about it all in to a piece of writing.
It has been a long season full of ups and downs. The excitement of being in a foreign country surrounded by a weird language and weird people has been something I'm so grateful to be able to do. But it hasn't all been smooth sailing. The kitchen has a very different style to places I've worked previously. I've always worked in big teams of chefs, usually at least 5 being in the kitchen at any time. This kitchen there was mostly just two of us in there full-time. And when you work with someone that closely and often I found it became quite monotonous, even lonely. She is a 62 year old lady, who became increasingly senile and petty as the season went on. It didn't help that we speak different languages so it was quite hard to communicate with each other. For example, a typical sentence from her sounds a little something like "I denks I speak for you, you sait what it is I go for the fait?" which is mostly just gibberish, a mixture of french, german and english. When that's what you're surrounded by 10 hours a day, 5 days a week for 7 months it can get quite hard sometimes.

Then there's the food itself. At first it was quite exciting and new. Then it became a bit same-same and repetitive. And ANNOYING. Doing the same food prep over and over rather than being able to move around to different sections like you would in a bigger kitchen and get a bit of variety is completely mind-numbing. I can't tell you how many kilos of champignons I chopped this year. It's in the hundreds.

But yeah, that's what I signed up for I guess. There's really nothing there that I should be complaining about, it's all just part of being a chef in general.

I got together with a waitress that works here not long after arriving. That's been great having someone to go and do things with on days off and help with the language, but that has also been difficult. She has Borderline Personality Disorder. Some days she will be all over me, telling me how much she loves me, asking me how I am all the time, how great I am etc. And then in the flick of a switch she can become this completely different person. I'll get horrible, horrible messages telling me how sh*t I am and what a disappointment I am to her, that I'm a sh*t boyfriend and I don't understand anything, we're not working, I make her feel lonely, I'm the lowest piece of sh*t she's ever met etc etc etc. Sometimes barging in my room while im sleeping to punch me and kick and scream etc.
Usually all because of things I can't control. Everyone's having dinner together, another worker (who has a husband and kids) takes my photo and calls me sexy in a joking, friendly way. BOOM, "fu** YOU, WHY DOES EVERYONE TELL YOU YOU'RE SEXY, I CAN'T HANDLE IT YOU PIECE OF sh*t"
and I'm just like "Uhh what did I do? I was just sitting there holding your hand at the table, how is that my fault?"
Or I go and play FIFA with a dude that works there and when she finds out about it again it's "You've betrayed me, go fu** yourselves and have a great life with your best friend you queer fu**s"
That's just from going over to play playstation one night a week maybe. Completely ridiculous overreaction.

But I know she has no control over that and that's just the illness. And I don't want it to sound like that's how it is all the time. The highs are really, really great and she can go weeks at a time without having an 'episode'. She's a really sweet person, thoughtful and loving and fun to be around. But yeah she feels everything to the absolute extreme, there's never a dull moment. And I think one of the big problems is up here we are all so isolated and close, it can feel as though sometimes we have no room to breathe and you can lose yourself a bit.

On top of that, I ended up working 19 months without a week off so to be honest I'm just completely drained, physically and mentally.

BUT, it's not all doom and gloom! (hard to believe at this stage hey?)
I have seen some amazing places, done some awesome things and met some wonderful people. And this week, the season finally finished and we are officially on holidays! 6 weeks off. My girlfriend and I have rented a campervan that we pick up in Paris on Tuesday, which we will be driving North through Denmark, Belgium, Netherlands, Sweden and Germany. We have no plan really, we are kinda just gonna wing it. So I can finally relax a little and not worry about work while I get to see different parts of Europe which I'm super excited about.

Here's a few photos

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wadistance

Premiership Player
Sep 17, 2011
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Jesus christ - that took me on a massive journey!

Those photos are incredible - I realise how much I miss the mountains after having lived in Hamburg for 18 months... potentially the flattest place in the world, and although I love the Elbe/Alster/Deichrunde, its an incredibly boring landscape.

Language is always a really tough one - I found that using apps such as Babbel/Duolingo and the study guides on dw.de , and then just practicing hard at work really helped me with German. I now speak conversational, and its not a formal conversational - my grammatical stuff isn't the best at times, but as long as people can understand you and vice versa, it suddenly becomes very un-isolating.

Also - personality disorders. I've been through that with an ex. Makes it even harder when you're in a small village and theres not much other contact to let it go... guess you have to figure that one out on your own.

Send me a PM if you're ever up in the north of germany, always up for a beer and a chat!
 

adammania9

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Mar 18, 2013
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Has anybody ever lived in the Middle East? Sounds nuts but I’m starting to grow tired of the Australian lifestyle and am looking at options pretty much everywhere, and I really enjoyed my time in Qatar when I went once and have always wanted to go back to the area. It’s a growing area and with so many European and American expats that I reckon it would be fairly easy to fit in socially. Dunno, just looking around; does anybody have any experiences?
 

Total Power

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Has anybody ever lived in the Middle East? Sounds nuts but I’m starting to grow tired of the Australian lifestyle and am looking at options pretty much everywhere, and I really enjoyed my time in Qatar when I went once and have always wanted to go back to the area. It’s a growing area and with so many European and American expats that I reckon it would be fairly easy to fit in socially. Dunno, just looking around; does anybody have any experiences?
Depends where in middle east? the weather is a big problem here, but if you are not an outdoor person it can be fine. I am often in Qatar for business and i don't really like it. You dont see any Qataris anywhere and everything is run by migrants, feel too artificial to me.
 

glitch01

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Aug 16, 2009
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Has anybody ever lived in the Middle East? Sounds nuts but I’m starting to grow tired of the Australian lifestyle and am looking at options pretty much everywhere, and I really enjoyed my time in Qatar when I went once and have always wanted to go back to the area. It’s a growing area and with so many European and American expats that I reckon it would be fairly easy to fit in socially. Dunno, just looking around; does anybody have any experiences?
Really depends on what you’re after.
I’m now into my 12th year in Dubai. We have a pretty enjoyable lifestyle but the place has its challenges.
One of the biggest things I struggle with is the fact that it is a very transient place, friends come and go a lot.
The place is tax free but there are lots of govt fees etc.
Alcohol, Pork etc are all readily available but not cheap. Plenty of pubs and clubs if you’re into that.
I’m fortunate enough to work for an American company in a defence related industry so I make enough to live well and save a decent amount too.
As you can imagine it gets hot. 8-9 months of the year is pretty uncomfortable outdoors.
Had some friends living in Qatar and they said it was ok but Dubai was better for socialising etc. Qatar right now is subject to a boycott from the rest of the Gulf countries and living costs have skyrocketed. Salaries apparently have stagnated or been reduced as companies struggle.



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Great8

Brownlow Medallist
Apr 19, 2015
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Has anybody ever lived in the Middle East? Sounds nuts but I’m starting to grow tired of the Australian lifestyle and am looking at options pretty much everywhere, and I really enjoyed my time in Qatar when I went once and have always wanted to go back to the area. It’s a growing area and with so many European and American expats that I reckon it would be fairly easy to fit in socially. Dunno, just looking around; does anybody have any experiences?
One of my UK cousins moved to Muscat for work about 6 years ago and absolutely loves it. He has worked in several other ME countries but reckons that Oman is such a friendly and welcoming country. I have visited Oman numerous times and I can see why he loves it.
 

raskolnikov

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Apr 1, 2002
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Swiss german lol don't even try... i lived there for for several years and everytime i would speak in swiss german the swiss will reply back in English LOL.
I moved to Moscow not long after the breakup of the Soviet Union. I learned Russian to a point where I was quite fluent. But I had the same issue. Speak it to a Russian on the street and they would answer back in English. My Russian friends said it was because Russian people were so unused to foreigners speaking English that they just assumed as soon as they heard an accent that I didn't speak Russian. I was teaching in Moscow and used to have fun with my classes. I had a different class every 3 months. They'd all assume I didn't speak Russian then after a little while I'd drop a line in Russian and they'd all look at me with mouths wide open, "You speak Russian?"
 

Shell

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Jul 2, 2005
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I moved to Moscow not long after the breakup of the Soviet Union. I learned Russian to a point where I was quite fluent. But I had the same issue. Speak it to a Russian on the street and they would answer back in English. My Russian friends said it was because Russian people were so unused to foreigners speaking English that they just assumed as soon as they heard an accent that I didn't speak Russian. I was teaching in Moscow and used to have fun with my classes. I had a different class every 3 months. They'd all assume I didn't speak Russian then after a little while I'd drop a line in Russian and they'd all look at me with mouths wide open, "You speak Russian?"
Lol i found the complete opposite in Greece- I'd speak a few words of Greek (probably along with my greek accent coming out along with it) and i'd get a wall of fluent Greek back. Was pretty embarrassing tbh. I wont even begin to get into the confusion over buying grapes in a fruit shop. :$
 

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Ishikawa

Club Legend
Jul 18, 2018
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One of my UK cousins moved to Muscat for work about 6 years ago and absolutely loves it. He has worked in several other ME countries but reckons that Oman is such a friendly and welcoming country. I have visited Oman numerous times and I can see why he loves it.
The Anthony Bourdain Parts Unknown episode on Oman is outstanding. Should still be on SBS On-Demand.
 

Great8

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The Anthony Bourdain Parts Unknown episode on Oman is outstanding. Should still be on SBS On-Demand.
I still haven’t seen it but must chase it up.
I love Oman and hopefully I can get back there in the next couple of years. Got a few other holidays I need to sort out first
 

JD234

Rookie
Oct 2, 2019
32
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Love this thread so much, gives me plenty of inspiration!
I am seriously considering leaving to go live overseas again. I am a teacher, so thankfully that opens a few doors in terms of getting work in foreign countries.
Any recommendations? Open to anywhere
 

Kummerspeck

Norm Smith Medallist
Sep 12, 2013
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Love this thread so much, gives me plenty of inspiration!
I am seriously considering leaving to go live overseas again. I am a teacher, so thankfully that opens a few doors in terms of getting work in foreign countries.
Any recommendations? Open to anywhere
What are you interested in? What hobbies do you have? What appeals to you most about loving overseas?
 

wadistance

Premiership Player
Sep 17, 2011
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Love this thread so much, gives me plenty of inspiration!
I am seriously considering leaving to go live overseas again. I am a teacher, so thankfully that opens a few doors in terms of getting work in foreign countries.
Any recommendations? Open to anywhere
Are you looking at earning lots of money and getting ahead, or enjoying life and not being too worried about how much you put away?


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JD234

Rookie
Oct 2, 2019
32
10
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What are you interested in? What hobbies do you have? What appeals to you most about loving overseas?
Interested in Sport/making new friends/gaming. What appeals to me the most is probably the whole idea of having everything new. New area, new culture, new people.

Are you looking at earning lots of money and getting ahead, or enjoying life and not being too worried about how much you put away?
To be honest, either way doesn't really phase me. What would be an example either way that you are thinking of?
 

wadistance

Premiership Player
Sep 17, 2011
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Interested in Sport/making new friends/gaming. What appeals to me the most is probably the whole idea of having everything new. New area, new culture, new people.



To be honest, either way doesn't really phase me. What would be an example either way that you are thinking of?
You wanna make bank, teach in the Middle East or China. You’ll get accomodation, living wage and two flights per year home in addition to your salary, and in the Middle East, most probably tax free.

In Germany, depending on what city you live in, you’ll probably save around 500€/month after all expenses and living costs. But depending on what you like, you’ll more likely have a more comfortable life (no restrictions on alcohol/western ways of life), close to other amazing European cities etc


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Kummerspeck

Norm Smith Medallist
Sep 12, 2013
5,136
5,236
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Interested in Sport/making new friends/gaming. What appeals to me the most is probably the whole idea of having everything new. New area, new culture, new people.
Go anywhere in Europe that doesnt have English as the primary language, don't join any Aussies in XXX groups, try and find clubs or groups in your area that have the same interests. It's hard and can be very lonely the first year (or first few years), but you build connections and learning the local language is insanely rewarding (and goes faster if you don't fall into the trap of surrounding yourself with other immigrants).
 

wadistance

Premiership Player
Sep 17, 2011
4,224
3,955
Hamburg, DE
AFL Club
West Coast
Other Teams
BvB, Boston Celtics
Go anywhere in Europe that doesnt have English as the primary language, don't join any Aussies in XXX groups, try and find clubs or groups in your area that have the same interests. It's hard and can be very lonely the first year (or first few years), but you build connections and learning the local language is insanely rewarding (and goes faster if you don't fall into the trap of surrounding yourself with other immigrants).
I.e never move to Berlin


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Total Power

Hall of Famer
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LOL i got called out a million times in Berlin cause i usually wear a Port hat/beanie despite going to local places. Way too many Aussies there. While i like Berlin for a short stopover, there's no way i am ever living there.
 

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