Midnight at the Airport

*Today I'm speaking at The Hilton on Orchard Road in Singapore. It's our very first big fat expat meetup. Here's a copy of today's talk.* It's after midnight and I'm sitting in a restaurant at the airport. I have all of my familiar airport paraphernalia with me: a neck pillow, a long scarf that will later serve as an additional blanket on the … [Read more...]

A Buttered Bum

*I gave a talk yesterday at a Breast Cancer Awareness function in Doha. There were some great speakers from Hamad and the Cancer Centre - lots of great info and a great event to show women in Qatar that they are in good hands. I really want to say thank you to the American Women's Association. Those love heart cushions and drain bags are so … [Read more...]

Ladies Who Do Much More Than Lunch

There was a moment, maybe a minute, in Abu Dhabi this week where I wondered if my self perceived spirit of adventure was perhaps a little reckless. The seed of doubt was planted by my mother while speaking on the phone that morning, me in a taxi on my way to the airport, her in my hometown of eight thousand people in rural Australia. "Just be … [Read more...]

Expat Women Snap To It

Over the past year life in Qatar required 4am starts for work, it was a time zone thing, me on one side of the world, headquarters on the other. While the children got ready for school I sat with the door closed in my office, headset on, praying that no-one needed to find their PE shirt at the wrong time. If a fight broke out outside my door I'd … [Read more...]

5 Steps Towards Becoming a Great Expat

Step One: Kick off from your "home country", make your house a home. Fill it with shiny appliances that work, furniture that has been measured and matched, and then forcefully cram it into a dirty old banged up shipping container and push it out to sea for six months. Step Two: Arrive at your new location, realise it works on a completely … [Read more...]

The Recipe for a Perfect Move

Somewhere in the middle of last week my husband and I became obsessed with coleslaw. Ridculous, I know, but there we were with the recipe book open discussing which cabbage, savoy or chinese, like the world depended on our decision. It was Eid Al Adha and with the kids off school, and both of us not working, it meant time was on our side. Time we … [Read more...]

Why I’ve Been Taking Pictures of the Back of my Head…

I've been taking photos and video of the back of my head for around 8 months now. It began post chemo when my hair began to thin. Just the odd sneaky shot to see how things were looking back there. Scrutinized and then deleted for fear of being caught. The weekend when I began to malt more than a siberian husky co-incided with a volleyball … [Read more...]

The Expat Home

The children came home to find me sobbing on the couch. "The most amazing thing has just happened" I told them while smiling through the tears. If you happen to have a teen in your house right now you'll know the look they gave me. "Mum's lost it again. Here we go..." In my mind it was miracle. The message came through on the blog, via … [Read more...]

Don’t Apologize For The Good Bits

A girlfriend of mine removed her recent family holiday snaps from Facebook. I know this because I wanted to go back and have a second look, I was interested to see whether they'd tagged in the name of exactly where they stayed. The shots were, as they say, picture perfect. The beach looked beautiful, the food fresh, every shot said come to Asia … [Read more...]

Every Expat Parent Knows It…

Born in one country, living in another - the beginning of expat life. My first baby was 11 days old when we made our way to the airport. In those 11 days we'd taken part, like many before us, in the expat version of the Amazing Baby Race. From the moment our newborn had made an appearance my husband was on a mission - a series of challenges for … [Read more...]