Living abroad

Does retiring to Costa Rica, working in Australia, or studying in France sound good? 

How to retire overseas : everything you need to know to live well (for less) abroad
Kathleen Peddicord.
New York : Hudson Street Press, c2010.
Experience a new culture, enjoy affordable luxuries, and relax in an idyllic home for less than where you live now. With this easy-to-use, step-by-step guide, anyone can retire in paradise, living a dream life for a bargain price. Book jacket.
Retirement without borders : how to retire abroad in Mexico, France, Italy, Spain, Costa Rica, Panama, and other sunny foreign places (and the secret to making it happen without stress)
Barry Golson, with Thia Golson and expert expats.
New York : Scribner, 2008.
Barry Golson knows all about retiring abroad-he and his wife, Thia, have lived in six different countries. Now they choose expatriate-friendly locales around the world for their low cost and their high quality of living and explain how to investigate and settle in each country with minimum hassle and maximum pleasure.
The grown-up's guide to running away from home : making a new life abroad
Rosanne Knorr.
Berkeley, Calif. : Ten Speed Press, c2008.
Who hasn't fantasized about running away from home to spend tranquil days strolling through the Italian hill country or listening to Mexican folk music in a colorful plaza? Or maybe you'd prefer to spend your time sailing from one glorious Caribbean island to another. Whatever your fancy, midlife and beyond offers empty-nesters and early retirees the opportunity to turn those mental dreamscapes into treasured experiences.

Living in a foreign country, whether permanently or for only a short time, can be a wonderful experience. To make the most of the experience there are some things you can do before you make the move. 

Africa on six wheels : a semester on safari
Betty Levitov.
Lincoln : University of Nebraska Press, c2007.
""I think I get it," Betty Levitov's youngest student said, sitting on a porch in Harare, Zimbabwe. "You've had a potentially fatal disease, and faced death, and now you'll do just about anything." The student was trying to fathom why a teacher would take thirteen kids from a small midwestern liberal arts college on a three-month trek across Africa." "The answer, a learning experience like no other, unfolds in Levitov's account of her life-changing stint as a mwalimu ("teacher" in Swahili) with an Australian bus driver and thirteen college kids from Nebraska in tow. The group's wanderings take them - and us - through seven countries. Through dhow trips and donkey rides on the Swahili island of Lamu, scuba diving and spice tours in Zanzibar, camping in the Namib Desert, and swimming on the edge of a cataract at Victoria Falls, we encounter remarkable people, new customs, and intriguing arts (along with malaria, flat tires, a bike accident, and a hostage crisis). As the students apprentice themselves to African cooks, fishermen, carvers, and batik artists, we discover with them a subtle and complex connection among people normally worlds apart."--BOOK JACKET.

It is important to learn as much as possible about the the country before you leave home.  If you can, try to take a language course.  This will make you feel more at ease and welcomed by your foreign friends. By showing that you are interested in their language, foreigners will be more willing to come to help you.  It will also make shopping for essential items and food much easier.

Communicate with other people who lived or traveled in that country to find out about the cultural differences they experienced.  They can help you understand customs, provide ideas about housing, and suggestions for places to see and things to do. 

Learn about the foods and eating habits you should expect in the country.  Consider taking a cooking course before you relocate.  For example, a course on Japanese cooking could show you how to use chopsticks, to cook Japanese food, introduce you to sushi, and alert you to the different eating customs in a Japanese restaurant, business setting, or family home. 

Before your move take time to learn about the country's laws, especially any related to foreign residents.  Check with embassies. Learn what to do, and where to go for help, should you need it in the country where you will be living.  Register with the U.S. Embassy upon your arrival, just in case there is a family or country emergency.

Nice work if you can get it : life and labor in precarious times
Andrew Ross.
New York : New York University Press, c2009.
Is job insecurity the new norm? With fewer and fewer people working in steady, long-term positions for one employer, has the dream of a secure job with full benefits and a decent salary become just that - a dream? InNice Work If You Can Get It, Andrew Ross surveys the new topography of the global workplace and finds an emerging pattern of labour instability and uneven development on a massive scale. Combining detailed case studies with lucid analysis and graphic prose, he looks at what the new landscape of contingent employment means for workers across national, class, and racial lines - from the emerging "creative class" of high-wage professionals to the multitudes of temporary, migrant, or low-wage workers. Developing the idea of "precarious livelihoods" to describe this new world of work and life, Ross explores what it means in developed nations - comparing the creative industry policies of the United States, United Kingdom, and European Union, as well as developing countries - by examining the quick fire transformation of China's labour market. He also responds to the challenge of sustainability, assessing the promise of "green jobs" through restorative alliances between labour advocates and environmentalists. Ross argues that regardless of one's views on labour rights, globalization, and quality of life, this new precarious and "indefinite life," and the pitfalls and opportunities that accompany it is likely here to stay and must be addressed in a systematic way. A more equitable kind of knowledge society emerges in these pages" less skewed toward flexploitation and the speculative beneficiaries of intellectual property, and more in tune with ideals and practices that are fair, just, and renewable.

Lastly, encourage your family and friends to write often and send care packages. Being homesick is a given form any when they first arrive in a foreign country. It may take awhile to make new friends and feel comfortable living abroad.

However, after a few months, you will soon become familiar with a different culture and begin thrive in your new home-away-from-home.

Article by: St. Louis Public Library staff