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Poll: Do you consider the country you are currently living as your home?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff

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Apr 17

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Do you consider the country you are currently living as your home?".

This poll was originally submitted by Egmont Schröder. View the poll results »



 

Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 19:26
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Yes Apr 17

I’m living in my home country (Portugal), but I lived for 30 years in Belgium and after an adaptation period I must say that I felt like a divorced child having two homes (without the trauma of a divorce…). I never felt like a fish out of water and loved both countries!

 

Ricki Farn
Germany
Local time: 20:26
Member (2005)
English to German
Other Apr 17

I consider a country an imagined community.

My home is a few kilometers around where my bed is and where the squirrels dig up my flowerbox. Everything else is just space.


 

Anna Herbst  Identity Verified
Australia
Local time: 04:26
Member (2008)
English to Swedish
+ ...


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Yes Apr 17

Australia has been my home for 30+ years, but I also consider Sweden, the country where I was born and raised, my home.
I spent a year living and working in China, and then Beijing was my home with Melbourne coming in as my second home, and for a number of years while living in Sweden, I spent a few months each year in Greece, which I then counted as my second home.
In short, I have had the fortune of living in several different countries and cultures for long enough to be able to call them all home.


 

EvaVer  Identity Verified
Local time: 20:26
Member (2012)
Czech to English
+ ...
No Apr 17

I live where I was born, but I would go crazy if I thought of this mess as my home. Europe is my home - that's how I feel when outside it.

 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 19:26
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
It's an interesting question Apr 17

Since leaving my country of birth, the UK, I've lived in the Netherlands, France and Spain. I used to run a workshop helping job-seekers to find work on the international scene and we always discussed expatriation/immigration (call it what you will) in the last session. I've seen so many fellow Brits who moved to their new country maybe decades ago and yet still think of the UK as their only real home. Of course, it isn't just Brits that think that way, but some countries' citizens do seem generally more able to integrate and find their identity in the new country. It has a lot to do with the motivation to learn the language -- or lack of it, of course. I often get asked questions like "Are you going home for Christmas?". I know precisely what they mean but I can't stop myself irritating them by saying that I don't know; I might get the bus into Corralejo for a drink in the evening icon_smile.gif.

Personally, I didn't entirely think of the Netherlands as home, because we never intended to stay for more than three years, although I was never homesick either. But it came as a great shock and a wrench when we suddenly (and mutually) decided to leave France. That was most definitely my home. Now, Brexit is forcing Brits abroad to rethink their whole attitude to home. I wasn't even afforded a vote and nobody in power there has ever listened to my views nor shown any genuine interest in the problems being faced by those of us living around the EU, whereas the Spanish and local authorities have been at pains to assure us that we'll always have a home here. So I'm ready to break all my ties with my first home in return for remaining an EU citizen. Europe is my home.


 

Justin Peterson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 20:26
Member (2007)
Spanish to English
I used to joke I was "half-Spanish" Apr 17

After 15 years, it´s not a joke any longer.

And, with Trump in the White House ... I feel more European every day.


 

Egmont Schröder  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 20:26
Member (2013)
Chinese to German
+ ...
Yes Apr 17

When I left Germany to go to Australia, I was very sure that I will never come back. But after some years abroad I discovered that I am more "German" that I want to be and decided to go back.

Germany will always be my first home, I suppose, although I sometimes miss the open nature of the people I met from other cultures.

My second home is Taiwan. Fortunately, I have the opportunity to pack my kids and to go to my wife's family for some months every year.


 

Noni Gilbert  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 20:26
Spanish to English
+ ...
"Are you going home for the summer"... Apr 17

I was about to cite this example often appearing in the mouths of unsettled British/Irish/US etc colleagues and friends, and Sheila has made a very similar comment: it really jars with me. My home is very much here in Spain, well over half my life here and almost all my adult life. But it was so from the very first moment I moved here, lock, stock and barrel, and I think I was lucky to feel so settled. Undoubtedly the fact that I am probably at greater ease in social situations in Spanish than in English is a weighty factor.

But then I do come from Irish stock, with actually very few closer family members living in Ireland or the UK. And there is no "family home" to return to, which makes a huge difference I would think.



[Edited at 2018-04-17 12:01 GMT]


 

Robin Levey
Chile
Local time: 15:26
Spanish to English
+ ...
Home is where you are Apr 17

I’ve lived away from my native England non-stop for 40 years, and very rarely been back even for short visits (my family is very small, so there have been few weddings and funerals to go to). I’ve lived and worked on both sides of the Atlantic (three countries in Europe and three in Latin America), and on both sides of the equator. I’m currently beating my own “personal best” perseverance record for staying in one place – 15 years in (or very near) the same town in the foothills of Andes. I have no reason to think that any of the previous countries I’ve lived in is any more my “home” than where I live now. And if (should I say “when”?) the time comes that Chile fails to provide the minimal home and social comforts I need – or if I simply get itchy feet again – then I’ll up-sticks and set up home elsewhere and Chile will be consigned to the list of those places that left me wanting.

 

Mark Thompson  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 15:26
Member
Portuguese to English
Brasil! Apr 17

Born, raised and lived in the UK until the age of 35 (apart from 5 years British Army service in 1980s' West Germany).

Lived in Brasil for 15 years now, have a 14-year-old Brazilian-born son, and always been well received and treated.

Despite its many issues, I am very happy in Brasil and still consider it my home.


 

Mario Freitas  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 15:26
Member (2014)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Unfotunately, yes. Apr 17

As opposed to my colleague Mark, I was born and always lived in Brazil. I have also always wished I could flee from this place forever. A country that invests in ignorance and does not value respect for its citizens whatsoever is not worthy of my admiration. I may be too old for that, but I'll still move to a civilized place if I can, and never come back.

 

Kay Denney  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 20:26
Member (Apr 2018)
French to English
yes but Apr 17

Yes, like Sheila, I feel very much at home here and it jars when people ask me if I'm going home for Christmas. No, it's my children who come home for Christmas now! Especially considering that I don't have any family in the UK any more (I don't count the cousins and aunts and uncles who have never once come to see me in over 30 years despite repeated invitations).

To my knowledge France has not said anything about Brits here being welcome to stay, and the other night when discussing Brexit at a social gathering a French woman tartly retorted that "you shouldn't have voted out then". Having heard her slag off the current French president earlier, I immediately came back with "just like you should never have voted for Macron". She started to explain that she hadn't, but democracy and bla bla, and I interrupted with "sure, and do you really think I voted for Brexit? I don't even have the right to vote in the UK."

All my friends have been very understanding and kind, this was the first time I felt unwelcome.

I remember a friend who raises lambs in Spain who says "you are what you eat, and after all these years I've eaten enough Andalusian lamb to be able to say I'm Andalusian now".


 

R-i-c-h-a-r-d  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 15:26
Member (2006)
Portuguese to English
+ ...
Yes Apr 17

I've been living in Brazil on a permanent basis for sixteen years now, and my wife and children all live here with me, so I definitely consider Brazil my home. However, there will always be a hankering for the finer things of my home turf, back in England, and the things I can't do or get on a regular basis over here, and the need to travel long distances and at great expense just to overcome the longing and petty hankering for things. You can't be in two places at once, unfortunately, which is something that eats at me more and more the older I get.

Just reading what people above are saying about Brexit, and I feel for you all. I didn't get a say either in that stupid decision, and definitely want the UK to remain part of Europe, and whenever someone brings up the subject I feel ashamed and embarrassed about it. How many tens of thousands of people had no say in this, just like me?

[Edited at 2018-04-17 16:11 GMT]


 

Anne Schulz
Germany
Local time: 20:26
English to German
Yes Apr 17

I live in the country where I was born and spent most of my life (Germany). Similar to you, Egmont, I found I am very German whenever I lived in other countries (England, Ghana, US, Switzerland). As my family is small and distributed over many places, my definition of "home" is not based on where my family is. Home is where there are no sandtraps and stumbling blocks which continually remind me that I am different. (I hasten to add that I was warmly welcomed in every country: this is not about being rejected or ostracised, but about the hundreds of little oopses each day, week or month brings about.)

 
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