Monday, 9 August 2010

Expat Q&A

As Mil over at Lazy girl's blog has done, I thought I'd complete this short questionnaire that she found in a French women's magazine. The article was about expats in France.

My history:
5 years go, after finishing uni, I decided to come to France for a year to 'find myself'. Found my Frenchie instead. Now pasced to said frenchie, I am still finding myself.

What's the most British quality I have?
Wow, difficult question. (went away to think about this) Ok, I believe that education is a starting point for a career. In the UK, can you do any degree within reason, and then grow into a job once you've proved you have the capabilities to learn on the job. In France, education is the end of your career. Once you have a degree, or qualification, or exam, you can sit back and do the same job all your working life. But getting that darned piece of paper is nigh on impossible. Our systems are not compatible at all. Oh, and don't get me started with the differences in customer service......

Most British human quality....I'm an open person who wants to ask questions to get to know someone better. In France, (speaking from experience) you can be 'friends' with someone without even knowing what job they do, or how many brothers and sisters they have because these questions are deemed 'personal'.

What's the most French quality I have?
Maybe I've not been here long enough to decide yet. I know that here, family is very important and I love that. I'm very blessed to be part of a family that has acccepted me arms open. I am very proud of the bond I have with my French nephew. Makes a change from my own (very) dysfunctional family.

What my double identity adds to my personality?
It makes we want to visit more countries and learn about their cultures! I now know that there is more than one way to do something and neither is correct. It has highlighted how much I hate narrow-minded people. Being adaptable is my greatest strength.

What I want to pass on about my origins?
I worry about this a lot. Moving to another country really messes with the idea of 'origins' and I really do fear that as I do not have any family of my own generation in the UK that my future children will never understand their British origins. I'll meet that bridge when I come to it, but I may need therapy.

A childhood memory:
Winning the egg and spoon race at school when I was 7. I got a badge with '1st' on it and it was (still is!) the proudest sporting moment of my life.

My favourite smell from back home:
My dad painting the greenhouse, or picking garlic. My grandad making toast under the grill. What I wouldn't give to smell that again!


Frankofile said...

Such a thoughtful post Emmy -and lovely how you feel welcomed by your French family. Wondering if you have English-speaking friends to keep the 'origins' aspect going? But time enough to see how things work out there!

I've more or less stopped blogging but it's great to keep up with you :-)

Mil said...

Hi Emmy, thanks for responding to my blog invitation. Enjoyed reading your responses. I agree with you about wanting to visit more places now that I live here. I've got the travel bug. Now if only I had money...

Andromeda said...

I also really appreciate his welcoming, close family compared to the weird distant one behind I left behind. Sure there's drama here too, but they seem so much more "normal" than mine somehow. Family seems so important here, I really love that, and maybe what I learn from them will help me with my own?

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