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Climate shock: warming up to life at 4 degrees

I had a bit of a meltdown. Actually, given that it was on the third day of cycling in 4 degree Celsius weather, my reaction was more of a brain freeze than a melting of any sorts. I was on my way to the drycleaners with my husband’s suits when suddenly I thought ‘No!’ I squeezed the handbrakes and stopped even though the light was green and the person on the bike behind me swore and swerved. My fingers were numb inside...

Guest Blog: Book Review

Here you are – new place, new country, so much to do – now!  And you don’t even know how to ask what, when and how.  Your aim is to have a good life in this strange new place.  Learning the language can help you in that aim both in the short and longer term.  It helps you integrate with locals and earn their respect, meet other newcomers in the same situation as yourself, have a structure to your week and,...

Does your town like you?

Global nomads know it instinctively: there are places in the world where we feel more at home than other places. I’ve spent a lot of ink describing that how we experience living somewhere new is to a large degree influenced by how well we prepare, what we expect and need at that point in our life and how much we really want to be where we are. But there may be another element at play: the ‘personality’ of the...

How a Dutch dream came true in Nigeria

Micky Nijboer strides through the Saddle Club with contagious enthusiasm. ‘Let me show you around this little piece of paradise.’ The 9-hectare oasis lies in the pounding heart of Lagos – one of the world’s most densely crowded megacities. Outside the perimeter wall, car horns, street hawkers and truck motors screech and roar. But tranquillity blankets the horse-riding club this Wednesday morning. A gardener splashes...

Confessions of a GPS addict

I once left my office more than an hour early for a meeting that was technically a 15-minute drive away. I was in a new city; map on the dashboard and nerves carefully strapped under the seatbelt. Exactly one hour later I spotted my office to the left – like a lost dog I’d managed to sniff my way home. Through tear-blurred vision, I stubbornly tried again and found the building, just in time to watch my colleagues head...

The Cure for Culture Shock

This article first appeared in Global Living Magazine, Jan/Feb 2015 http://globallivingmagazine.com/jan-feb-2015-issue-released/ If you are about to move to live in a new country, you may be wishing there was an inoculation against the dreaded, inevitable culture shock. Well, I have some news for you: culture shock is not inevitable and there is something you can do about it. In popular writing today, culture shock is most...
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