My wife and I have seriously been contemplating the future. With the figurative grad school light at the end of the tunnel being visible, if not quite in focus yet, we’ve been seriously considering an opportunity to move to northern Europe. (Yes, I’m being as generic as possible.) However, neither one of us have lived outside of North America – and have only visited Europe a couple of times on vacation. That makes it pretty hard for us to critically evaluate the opportunity.
Thus, crowd-sourcing! I was wondering if anyone had any advice they might be able to share with us on what we can do to make that move successfully – both things we should or shouldn’t do. Or, if people think it’s a great idea, or a bad idea. Really, we’re trying to cast the net as wide as possible on whatever advice people can give us because it’s really hard to make a decision like that without talking with people who have done it.
Some of the outstanding questions we have:
- How did you find the language learning curve when moving to a non-English country?
- How much of your stuff did you take with you? What did you do with the stuff you left behind?
- How did you find solutions to the “2-body” problem?
- How long does the culture shock last?
- Was it a hassle bringing pets?
- What are the big “gottchas” that you didn’t see coming?
- How long did it take to organize your move? How hard was it?
- Would you suggest that other people do it?
- How long did you stay? (yes, not leaving ever is also an acceptable answer.)
And, of course, are we even asking the right questions?
Any advice you can give would be helpful for us, and of course, for other people who are faced with this decision in the future.