What's your story? Discussions your reasons for going abroad.
Well it's been under wraps for a week, but I can now announce my new blog:
I started a positive travel blog a while ago, but then realised that my outlook on life is better suited to writing an anti-travel blog.
Anyway, I get flamed on HA sometimes for being too cynical about stuff, but on HBH I've posted solid photographic evidence of why being abroad sometimes sucks.
Kudos to S_Parc to actually having the guts to say he's happier back in the USA.
I'm not necessarily Happier Back Home, but there is plenty of stuff that is better back home!
Incidentally, I'm hungry for GUEST POSTS, so if you've got something to say about how being abroad (especially if it SUCKS), then send me articles/photos/guest posts and if they're good I'll stick them on the site. I'll give you a backlink to any of your own projects in return. I'll give homepage blogroll links for exceptional sites.
AM I HAPPIER ABROAD?
I'm almost 6 months into my living abroad experiment. So was it worth it?
Quitting my job - absolutely the best thing to do, no regrets there. I quit at the right time, before I saw pushed. Since I quit the 9-5, I feel a lot less stressed. That's good for long term health.
Adjusting to a new country - the body is surprisingly adept at adjusting to the "new normal".
Costs - guys, it's not cheap to live abroad, unless you want to live somewhere like Haiti. Weak Western currencies are hurting expats. Plus there are loads of things that are cheaper at home. Examples: vitamin supplements and toilet cleaner are more expensive in Thailand than they are in the UK, but on the plus toothpaste is very cheap here. I've mainly kept costs down by having no financial commitments at home, being extremely frugal and living in a modest studio apartment (Thailand) or cheap student room (China). If you want to live like some of those alphas on RooshV, you'll need $1500 a month minimum.
Earning money - it is possible to earn money abroad. If you're skint, get a teaching certificate and go teach English (or another language) in China. I make money online from numerous sources, but it's hard assed work and you can be wiped out so easily - even Winston will get smoked if his site were to ever drop out of Google. If you do want to go abroad, then start being frugal TODAY. From this day, you must only buy food. Stash everything else into investments that will pay you an income while you're away. In the long term, accumulate property, and rent it out.
Ladies - dating is better abroad. Chinese ladies are the hottest in the world, and it's easy to get dates. On the downside, meeting wife material - well that ain't easy *anywhere*. Thailand is easy to get laid, but finding good ladies is hard here. Many of my "good" ladies turn out to be hooking on the side. Plus China has spoiled me and there are not nearly as many 8/9/10's in Thailand as there were in China. Dare I say it - many of the gogo girls here are downright fugly. And of course it's easy to spot farangs with 2's or 3's, although not all have bad tastes.
Food - Eveyday Chinese food was pretty bad. Street food in Thailand is awesome. Malaysian food is also awesome but I was let down by terrible customer service and put off by Indians eating with their hands. Aargh!
Wildlife - mosquitoes were a nightmare in China. Thailand is much better, at least in Bangkok. Malaysia had no problems, mainly because the KL government seems better at stopping breeding ponds and I saw some fumigation going on. Mosquitoes are bad news, because cases of Dengue Fever have been soaring throughout SE Asia - even in Singapore. A single bite is all you need to get this nightmare illness.
Noise and annoyances - you need a thick skin and zen-like calm to live in Asia. It's noisy and the locals do stupid things like building work 7 am on a Sunday, or they spit or drive around beeping horns at 7 am. Also Thailand has a dog problem - everyone seems to have a dog so you get a load of barking at all hours. Plus my neighbours let their mangy dogs out to shit in the road. Still, I guess it's better than the Chinese, who let their kids shit in the street.
Education - Asia's not a good place to go and get an education. Go get your education back in the West.
Teaching - teaching is a lot of fun. The Chinese are serious learners. Education standards outside Japan/Korea/China/HK/Singapore/Taiwan are very low though.
Visas - getting a visa to stay somewhere long term is a pain in the ass, especially if you're not old enough to officially retire. The most welcoming countries are Malaysia and the Phillies.
Homesickness - I got a bit of this, especially when I got sick. I'm not really that close to my family. My friends also all got married and got kids, so I rarely saw them anyway. 40 is a good age to go abroad. The main thing that made me homesick was missing the food back home.
Health - I've just about adjusted to the climate. The humidity was a big problem in Guangzhou - even my head started going mouldy at one point. Beer and wine are quite expensive in Thailand, so I've been drinking a lot less than I did back home. I lost weight in China, mainly because there wasn't much worth eating. Sadly I've put the weight back on since moving to Thailand.
Going abroad is good for many things. I've got a lot more confident after going to somewhere like Japan and doing things like figuring out a train timetable with no English on it. And look at all the stuff I've done - it's truly epic.
On the downside back home will be ruined as you'll find your former friends and life very boring. Saturday nights in front of American Idol are going to be very boring after you've been to Soi Cowboy in Bangkok!
And abroad is getting much more like back home. Bangkok is full of women with too much makeup and thoughts full of shopping malls and Samsung phones. China was getting that way.
MY LONG TERM PLANS
I think I've ruined my former life by going abroad - everyone knows that Thailand is just full of sexpats and whores, so my reputation is tarnished. Never mind that the reality is way, way, different.
I don't know how I could go back to my old life.
I plan on staying abroad for a while. Bangkok is great but I think dating would have better prospects in somewhere like Chiang Mai. I prefer Vietnamese or Chinese women.
Malaysia is also an option - white legged Chinese women are abundant and it could be a place to find a sensible expat job.
IS WINSTON HAPPIER ABROAD?
Well Winston seems to have got to the age when he prefers to put his feet up. I think I'm at the same stage in life. Women are great, but to be honest I'm more interested in what great food and drink Thailand has to offer.
I hope Winston comes to Bangkok. I think he would appreciate the combination of awesome food and an abundance of women (some of whom have white legs).
Xiongmao has a point. Going abroad is worth it if you are just after chasing p***y.
Otherwise, you are compromising just about every thing else in life. Mostly life is better in the west. You take it for granted every thing just works and is of a higher standard. To live overseas means giving up your own cultural ways, language and way of life. Not always worth it just to escape western women.
You have a good point there, some people don't realize what life will actually be like living abroad until they do it and see just how it is. A lot of guys on this forum have said that they could not believe the amount of poverty they saw in the Philippines and in South America.
Also, scamming is a way of life for people in Russia and some other countries as well, if your not careful, you can get scammed too. Just be careful when you are overseas and remember, it's not paradise.
Like Ladislav said, there is no country that will give you everything you need, you need to combine two or more countries to achieve happiness.
"When I think about the idea of getting involved with an American woman, I don't know if I should laugh .............. or vomit!"
"Trying to meet women in America is like trying to decipher Egyptian hieroglyphics."
One cannot simply go abroad for an extended stay and expect everything to magically fall into place. It takes a great deal of hard work, planning and preparation which may need to begin several years before the actual move takes place. As other posters have said, you need to have a way of making money overseas, unless you are already filthy rich. Teaching is a good option, as is writing for English language magazines, both of which I did while I was in China. Don't just go abroad without planning, make sure you have a way to make a living first.
Another word of warning. Things abroad might not be as predictable as the US. Some countries' markets will fluctuate greatly, as China's did while I was there. One year, I was making enough money at my teaching job to afford many basic necessities, as well as some other "creature comforts." The next year (the year after the Olympics in Beijing), prices on goods, rent, and transportation costs skyrocketed, yet my salary remained the same. Simply put, I could no longer afford to live in China, so I had to come home. Always have a contingency plan in case something like this happens. The rules abroad are not always the same as in the US.
"A dreamer is one who can only find his way by moonlight, and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world." -Oscar Wilde
"Invincibility is in oneself, vulnerability is in the opponent" -Sun Tzu
The thing is that most people are not made for living abroad. They simply like life in their western countries more. They are not willing to adapt and if they are they donÂ´t like their new life. There is nothing you can do about it but realize the truth. At least you have learnt something about yourself when you come back after having failed to live abroad.
When I opened XiangmaoÂ´s blog he said that one of his biggest challenges in China have been mosquitos...Sorry but if minor things like that are a huge challenge then living in a sub-tropical/tropical country is not the right thing for you.
This is especially true for older guys who lived most of their lifeÂ´s in one particular country... I dont think that one can live for 50 years in country A and then move to country B and change his entire life. In most cases this is going to fail, unless you have enough money to have the same lifestyle in country B. But then, is it really living abroad or just having an extended vacation?
Now if you said not having a western style toilet, living in a wooden house without any comforts, not having western style showers, not having any kind of western food, not having electricity, not having internet, driving vehicles in totally different traffic conditions, having nobody who is able to speak English ... ThatÂ´s things that are challenging, mosquitos are not. People eating with their hands is not a challenge either. This isnÂ´t even different to the US. ArenÂ´t you using your hands when eating at Mc Donalds?
Unlike Bane I wouldnÂ´t agree that it takes years of preparation. You just need to know how you are going to create an monthly income before leaving your home country.
You also have to visit a lot of different areas of the world just to know which one you like. I like living in Asia but I couldnÂ´t be "happier abroad" in South America. Simply because I donÂ´t like life in these countries. For me they are good for holidays but not for living. You canÂ´t realize things like that on a message board.
You will need to learn to understand the culture you want to live in, you have to stop comparing things to your home country as soon as you have arrived, you will need to make some mistakes and learn from them too. Instead of visiting happier abroad you should find an expat forum of the country you are trying to live in and learn from the experiences others have made.
Most of all you will need to be willing to deal with bad things... There will be a lot of annoying things and you will need to deal with them. You canÂ´t move to a 3rd world country and expect to find everything in great condition. You also cant expect to live like a king for 1000 USD a month in ANY country. If a country is poor it doesnÂ´t make it a cheap place to stay.
Last edited by insanity on Mon Jul 29, 2013 1:08 pm, edited 2 times in total.
No itÂ´s not..ItÂ´s your personal preference. I hate it when people mix up their preferences and actual facts.
For me life in the west is awful...But thatÂ´s just my preference, not a universal fact.
He is partially correct for once. It does suck sometimes going abroad. Where he and many other's fail is that they never get a good wife out of it for their trouble. He is one of those wandering types that never seal the deal for whatever many reasons. Quite possibly the same reasons for his struggles at home....
A woman IS happiness. Living alone is torture and unnatural for any man. As crazy as China is, I bet I could live there at least 2-3 times longer than I could alone, if I am there with my wife. When it is time to go home from work and see her, I just cannot describe in writing how happy that makes me feel.
I'm glad some members are waking up. Not just "waking up" but WAKING UP!
I think being Happier Within is a better lifestyle choice. Then you can live anywhere!
Man... I'm sorry to hear that. :/
Self-proclaimed GAME DEVELOPER GOD
(Hey, do you know anyone else who can make ANY kind of 2D game from scratch and is quickly learning 3D game development? Didn't think so... )
Youth is wasted on the young! But wisdom is wasted on the old!
Some good thoughts!
Mosquitoes ARE a big problem. I complain about them, but they have killed millions, and ruined the lives of countless millions. One mosquito bite = small problem. Infection with Dengue = big problem.
There is poverty in Bangkok, but much of it appears to be fake poverty, like those beggers shipped in from Cambodia. It's especially bad seeing little kids dragged into it.
There are a lot of P4P women here, but this is a country with 0.89% unemployment. Nobody needs to be doing anything they don't want to.
As far as going abroad, I kind of took a year from making the decision to do it, to tidying up loose ends at home, and preparing my new life. I guess I had an advantage in that I'd previously visited where I was going to go.
Don't know if getting the money thing is important - the Western guy who busks outside my 7-11 was there when I went out, and still there when I got home.
Waking up inside is good. Opting out of the consumer lifestyle left me with enough cash to go see if it was better going abroad.
Just been out for a walk round Nana - this is a great place to people watch. And if you're through with the whole marriage thing, well there are plenty of good alternatives.
Also went on a sort of date. Well I found the shop where a lady I've been chatting to works, but she wasn't anything like her dating site profile. These Thai ladies are even better than the Chinese at airbrushing themselves.
Oh well, I've got another date lined up for tomorrow. Don't think I'd achieve meeting 5 women in 3 days back in my own country!
This is one thing I've observed, everywhere around the globe. There's no place, better than the US, for vitamins and supplements, including Canada & Australia. For some reason, that mid-90s FDA ruling on not making natural products via prescription only, has opened the flood gates on free enterprise and now, there are almost countless ways to get DHEA, Red Wine extract, Ginkgo, Vitamin C, and a bunch of other supplements, which could easily cost 2x in Canada or 3-4x in Asia. And in Asia, there's usually only one or two brands available, not a dozen like around here.
The thing with living in Asia (or even South America) is that the regions tend to get congested and unlike let's say rural upstate NY, you don't have vast areas of open nature, where one can walk about without massive crowds but at the same time, have access to a ranger station [by radio or cell phone], if you fall and need emergency medical treatment. Since I'd returned from my adventures in South America, that was the first thing I did. I'd re-connected with the natural settings in and around the New England and upstate New York regions. The real downer to America, once again, is that it's a woman-free zone, which means that for the most part, you need to be able to find some sort of happiness without women's approval. This is in stark contrast to Asia or South America where women are pretty much, all over a guy, if he's decent and available. Now, don't get me wrong, I have been attracting women locally, in the past few years, however, on American soil, it's always a charade of sorts. There are almost 0 honest hetero women around here and I'm not one of those guys who parks himself at the airport, waiting for a new FW to arrive in town
16 years ago, the Best Picture of 1999, "American Beauty", telegraphed the message of Happier Abroad to the world.
Beware of long term engagements with AWs, you may find yourself in a coffin.
AB discussion thread
BTW, despite settling down with an AW, myself, the warning is still in effect.
Sorry to hear what? Sorry that I am super happy living in the US because I have an awesome wife? If anything I feel very sad for you single men here that complain constantly and never plan to do anything about it! God never designed men to be lonely the way most of you live. He created women for a reason, he saw that Adam was only kinda happy with everything he needed around him, needed something more in order to feel complete. If God saw no need for women, he would have destroyed her a long time ago, like he did with dinosaurs, etc..
Wow! Nice work, I love it. I think you could potentially go far with this blog, it puts a different spin on things.
I totally agree. Living abroad can be cheap if you want to live in a hovel. But overall the cost of living in Bangkok for instance, is not that much less than western countries after you factor in visa runs, visa fees, indulgence, women etc.
Oh man..sorry but please dont talk about stuff you dont know anything about.
There is only fake poverty in Bangkok?? I guess all you ever did was hang out at Siam Paragon ?? Just go to the outskirts and then come back and tell us that there is no poverty in Bangkok.
Nana is a sex tourist dumb.. Not sure what is supposed to be interesting about it? Seeing lots of sex tourists with lots of mostly ugly bar girls.
The unemployment rate looks good on paper but is meaningless for obvious reasons.
That is what Xiongmao does... is this your first time seeing one of his posts?
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