Darnielle Sarjant

Hoi. I’m Darnielle Sarjant. On the last day of January in 2016, my highly skilled migrant husband and I boarded my very first international flight in New Zealand to move to the Netherlands, a country that’s less than a day’s drive away from the exact antipodal point of my hometown. Truly the other side of the world!

I feel like I’m somewhat of an atypical expat in that I don’t live in a major/international city (Ede), and not long after we arrived, I knew I was more of an immigrant than an expat. It didn’t feel nearly as strange and out of my comfort zone as I had expected. It felt like home. I am also disabled, which is a challenge in and of itself, but I get the added bonus of navigating the Dutch healthcare system!

I have degrees in psychology and education, but due to my disability, I can only work sporadically as what I like to call a digital multihyphenate. Which is really just a fancy term for “has computer with internet connection, can do cool/helpful stuff with it”. But more importantly, I am a stay-at-home mum to two dogs (Moose and Caribou) and a mischief of pet rats.

I look forward to sharing my experience with you this week!

Jennifer Johnson

Hey there, I’m Jennifer! I’m 32 years old and I’ve been living in Germany since December 2019. I originally moved to Gottingen and recently (two days ago, as I write this) moved to Berlin. I’m from Madison, WI and I have a masters degree in public policy. I have been volunteering & working in Wisconsin politics related positions since 2008, and have continued in Germany by working remotely for a Wisconsin based political organization. I’ve also recently joined Democrats Abroad and am looking forward to helping organize Wisconsin voters throughout the world during upcoming elections! I spend my spare time in Germany fostering dogs from France, taking long walks/runs, and meeting my friends for coffee and drinks!
PS: I’m not usually broadcasting my American status in Germany, but this photo was from 4th of July and I was excited to celebrate my country not being a total political disaster for the first time in four years (post-Trump)!!

Ben Clifford

Hi, I’m Ben. I left England when I was 19 to study abroad and kinda got stuck being a bit of a nomad after that – I’ve lived in Los Angeles and Utrecht, and a lot of the time in between I’ve spent remote working from wherever seemed interesting at the time. I did spent the last 7 years back in London though, which was an interesting experience of being in a new environment that was also familar from much earlier in my life. Right now, I’m in Berlin and have been here for 8 months. It was a bit of a random pick of wanting to move to a European city, without a strong preference of which one – but I’m pretty happy with how that choice turned out.

Stephanie Fuccio

This is my third time curating for WeAreXpats and I am thrilled to be back. I am now in the capital of Albania, which is Tirana. Albania is a small country just over the Adriatic from southeastern Italy (we are a ferry side away from Bari) and just above Greece. I’ve been a serial expat for the majority of the past 17 years, with a lot of that time in Asian countries (China, Vietnam, Japan, etc). In early 2020 my husband and I went from China to Germany in an attempt to find work and spent as long as we could there (I’m avoiding saying the term “settle down.”) Covid hit, the job market froze and our visas ran out. We flew 2-½ hours to Albania to regroup and plan whatever was to come next. Many things have happened since we came to Albania in October 2020 and I will share those with you during my curation. 

I’m a multi-passionate creative with a few key spokes in her podcast life. I’m a Freelance Podcast Editor, produce & host all of the podcasts in the Geopats Podcast Network and run a podcast sharing event on Twitter called Podcast Review Day (#PodRevDay). Our next event is on July 8th, during my curation week. Hurrah! I love to share what I learn about podcasting in writing, on the socials and in video calls with new Podcasters.

There’s heaps of info on my projects, publications and services at www.stephfuccio.com. I love hearing from people about the expat experience, podcasting, books and so much more. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch. 

Jodi Mølgaard

Hi, I’m Jodi. I’m originally from Hastings, on the south coast of England. 5 years ago, a chance meeting with a Danish girl while on a trip to Copenhagen changed my life. She thought I’d get on with her brother, so she asked him to contact me. Long story short, a year later, I moved to Denmark to live with him and now we’re married. So now I live with him in Skagen, a beautiful town at the northernmost point in Denmark. I’ve worked as a cleaner here for the last 4 years while I’ve learnt Danish, but am now looking into options for a more long-term career. 
I’m loving living by the sea again, after a 10 year period living and working in landlocked London. One of my favourite things to do is go for a walk on the beach at sunrise, and there are some spectacular sunrises here. 
I’m mum to one grown-up son, who lives in England, and stepmum to a 9-year-old boy.

Sabrina Zirakzadeh

I’m Sabrina, a first-generation (Guatemala and Iran) US citizen originally from Colorado currently living in Osaka, Japan. I grew up traveling to see family around the world and first became an expat at 22 in 2009 while getting my master’s degree in Popular Music Studies over two years in Glasgow, Scotland, where I met my future wife. Due to the difficulty of us being together on the same continent once my student visa finished (as this was before same-sex marriage equality passed in both the UK and the US), we decided to try finding work abroad together, and in 2012 I moved to rural Okayama prefecture in Japan as part of the JET Programme, with my wife joining me 6 months later. After my time on JET was finished, we moved to Osaka to pursue more relevant careers to our interests, and this summer will be my 9th year in Japan and 12th year living as an expat!
Being a “non-American-looking” American in the UK and Japan has presented me with some unique challenges, and being in a same-sex, binational marriage in a country that does not recognize it, as well as developing a rare and intractable dangerous illness since arriving has given me some experiences that I would honestly prefer not to have had. However, living in the UK and Japan has also given me the ability to pursue my dreams in ways I might not have had in the USA. In Japan, I’m using my skills as a musician to teach music for immersion school programs in Osaka while also performing for events, doing voice-over work at Universal Studios Japan and for textbook and transportation companies, and even working on independent films and other productions. It’s been exciting to go from university Japanese class-level to native-level Japanese, and joining a Japanese Spanish conversation group has been a wonderful way to meld parts of my culture with my new life here. 
My wife and I are currently preparing to leave Japan next summer, so we’re learning a lot about the repatriation/immigration process in the US and UK, as well as immigration proceedings in other countries where we aren’t citizens but qualify for spousal visas. Following in my family members’ footsteps and uprooting myself to live in places where I have minimal shared culture or language to immerse myself in something new has been an amazing experience and I’m not sure I’m ready for it to end, but after a year and a half enduring the pandemic in Japan, it’s time to move on. Still, I wouldn’t trade these experiences for anything, and I hope to maintain these connections no matter where we end up next!

Luisa Matatolu

Bula everyone! I’m Lulu and this is my first time curating the @WeAreXpats account. I have been an expat since I was 16, and I am excited to be curating this week from Scotland where I live with my husband. I miss the beaches and the tropical weather of the islands where I grew up, but I am finding a new love for the great expanse of the rich greenery & beautiful lochs here in the highlands. I hope to share a bit about my expat life so far and tell you more about my island home and my current home-away-from home.

Gary Dickenson

Hi I’m Gary and together with my wife, Gita, and daughter, in December 2018 we left the UK to come to Gita’s family homestead here in north Latvia. We live not far from the Estonian border and It’s somewhere nowhere in the middle of a forest in a house built by Gita’s grandfather.

With a long background in marketing and being stuck behind a desk we now have a very different outdoors life growing nearly all our veg and getting into animal husbandry, we’ve already raised pigs and will be getting chickens this year.

In addition we manage about 150 acres of our own forest. It’s all new to me, until I arrived here I’d barely grown anything but somehow we’ve made it so far. We’ve documented much of our progress on our YouTube channel which you can find by searching for Baltic Homesteaders.

Nuwan Rez

Hi everyone! My name is Nuwan. From Sri Lanka all the way to Germany, I have arrived via many exciting paths. Having grown up on an island, I miss the sea very much living in Frankfurt, but make up for it in other ways, especially by riding my motorbike through the more rural German country roads. I am a father of two, a husband, and work from home – can’t go back to an office job!

This is my second time curating the @WeAreXpats account, and having been an expat for a very long time (since I was 16), I hope to share with you a bit of the world, and my life at the moment.

Suzanne Scott

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I am Suzanne, a British married mother to 5 children who have now all fled the nest and are getting married and having babies themselves. My husband and I started our expat journey in January 2011, moving to South Africa where I worked as a volunteer and I continue to support various projects. We moved to Dubai in December 2014 with a cat and dog in tow. The cat and dog relocated to the UK in February 2020 and are looked after by neighbours and house sitters while I’ve travelled between there and Dubai when covid has permitted. We’re now preparing to relocate to the UK full time in June when my husband retires. I’m on all social media channels as Chickenruby.