Hello! I’m Ana Hernandez Blackstad and I’m thrilled to be the curator this week. I am a recent expat, having relocated to Prague, Czech Republic with my husband in August, 2016. Not long after settling in Prague, we came to Maidenhead, England, for a temporary work assignment and have been here since October. I am a lifelong Anglophile and worshipper of Jane Austen so you can imagine how chuffed I am to be here. 🙂
Before becoming an expat, home was Bothell, Washington, USA, near Seattle. I’ve happily lived in the Seattle area since 1990. Before relocating abroad, I worked mainly in higher education with stints in career consulting and one memorable 6 month period working in customer service at IKEA. (I think I’m lucky Twitter didn’t exist back then!)
My parents are from the state of Coahuila in Mexico; they relocated to the state of Wyoming in America, which is where I grew up. My mom was a teacher, with summers off, so every year we spent 3 months living with relatives in Mexico – sometimes Christmas break, too. Playing Loteria with our cousins in the hot summer evenings, eating barbacoa with fresh tortillas, taking walks to the Zocalo, going to mass on Sundays, making tamales in an assembly line of Aunties – it was glorious and a stark contrast to our life in Wyoming. This early exposure to travel lit a fire in me to experience other cultures. My husband is from Hawaii and he shares my passion for travel and making new friends. We will be celebrating our 20th wedding anniversary this month.
I’m happy to share my experiences in England this week and you may hear from me again later, when I’m back in Prague. Looking forward to interacting with you!