Name: Misha Fontenot
Where are you from: Los Angeles, California
Where are you now: Carlisle, England (as far North as you can get on the West coast and not be in Scotland)
Why did you decide to move abroad: Love. I joke that it screws up everything! LOL
Tell us a little bit about you: I am a semi-sane person that has moved from sunny Southern California to beautiful Northern England. I lived in the UK for 7 years. I work as an administrator at a company that supports people with disabilities. I have a wonderful husband and a troll of a daughter who is five and is currently making me insane.
What do you miss the most about back home: Mexicans. Their culture, their food, their accents, their restaurants!
Favorite part about living overseas: The accents and the language. I usually laugh every day. What a hoot! I constantly think they are making things up – but apparently this is their language! (Mind you I am up in the North – so sometimes they make it up).
Hardest part about living overseas: Not having my family and friends nearby. Facebook, Skype, phones help – but it’s not the same.
Did you experience any culture shock: Did I ever! I still do. I thought we’d be very similar – but we are totally different people. I enjoy it – but I also become enraged by it (see supermarkets for a reference point).
Any advice for fellow Americans moving abroad: Be ready for some hard times. It is fantastic living in Dickensian England – but it’s hard, too. You will have ups and you will have downs. Reach out for help when the downs happen – use your fellow expats for this as we can totally relate. When you are on your ups – don’t forget to help those that are reaching out. I can say that there is no sure way to tell how well you will adapt – everyone is different. Oh, and ‘shag’ is technically a naughty word – even if it isn’t a bad word. Don’t use it at work.
Any other thoughts you would like to share with us: It’s all so confusing and strange and fantastic and wonderful and horrible all at once. Welcome to the life of an expat.
Thank you Misha for letting us get to know you!