Do You Have A Querencia?

When I was eighteen and living in a share house in the city, I was interviewed by a communications student who was putting a short film together on young women. She asked me where I felt the happiest, where was my favourite place to be. The answer was instant and I imagine possibly the most generic of any child who grew up where I did. "The … [Read more...]

Australia – It won’t kill you

Growing up, our family would never have been accused of being hard core campers. Camping always involved a houseboat and often required a sneaky trip back to town to use the facilities. I know, I know, as country people we should be hanging our heads in shame.Nevertheless, we did sleep in tents, we got rained on at Easter and burnt to a crisp in … [Read more...]

Friends, Old and New.

This weekend is the weekend for old friends. Women who stood by my side with their make-up melting off of their faces and perspiration running down their legs, while G and I exchanged our vows. It was one of the hottest days in all history in my hometown on the day we married, the groomsmen were not loving their three piece suits. This weekend I … [Read more...]

God’s Own Country

At a seventies party in Jakarta, I found myself in the middle of the dance floor speaking with two afro wearing Brits. Between beverages and outdated dance moves, we had the usual expat speed dating conversation. "Where are you from? How long have you been here? How long are you here for?To avoid the long winded I'm from a small country town but I … [Read more...]

Who’s got your back?

I was over at Edenland this morning. As I am most mornings. I read her post about guardian angels and feathers and then read her question."What's your own personal sign that things will be ok? That you're safe, in the world. That something or someone has your back."A girlfriend of mine returned home from backpacking with her boyfriend. They'd done … [Read more...]

So, where are you from?

I am a proud Australian.Well, I am most of the time, just not that one time in Bali when I was surrounded by drunken Aussies with braided hair and the really loud obnoxious guy called Chook threw up inside the temple. It's possible I may have murmured something that day about being from New Zealand.National pride is a interesting emotion. Each of … [Read more...]

How do you make an Aussie?

Ask any expat how they keep ties with their home country and the answers will usually be similar. Some make a concerted effort to travel "home" regularly, some Skype with family and friends, maybe they keep themselves updated with Facebook or perhaps they have that regular ET moment each week, where they, 'phone home'.If you're an expat parent, … [Read more...]

The Traveling Tampon

Have you ever stood in a supermarket line with a years supply of tampons? Ever had to declare your tampons at customs? Or perhaps you've stood in a crowded foreign airport (using a mixture of broken English and sign language) explaining what you do with your tampons and why you're currently carrying hundreds of them? If the answer is yes, chances … [Read more...]

Making the world smaller

Qatar is currently hosting the Asian Cup. Which means the city has a few extra football/soccer (depends where you're from) players and fans wandering its streets.  As well as playing host to our visitors, The Asian Cup also provides an opportunity for locals and expatriates to cheer their home country along.For an Australian, it means we have to … [Read more...]

From a distance.

There's something quite surreal about watching a news broadcast where all the pictures are familiar but the language is one you are yet to understand. As I stand in our Doha kitchen, spreading butter on my toast, the Arabic voice continues while waterlogged but familiar shots of my homeland appear on the screen. I'm completely gobsmacked. I haven't … [Read more...]