How long have you lived overseas?
i've been in england for four years now, but moved overseas in october 95, and have lived in three foreign countries since then, interspersed with periods back in america. about 9 to 10 years total overseas.
What made you decide to leave the US?
why i left, is too long to go into. but two quick things, i was bored and wanted to see the world some and have some sort of adventure or experience as well as gain knowledge, and i was hoping to find an alternative to where i was living, a completely different world. i was extremely naive.
What do you miss about not being in the US?
i miss the nice people most. i live in the country with the nastiest, england. ok, maybe australia (judging from several people i've met). i've started to really love america from a distance, and miss it so much. all my greatest times were there. the people were so open, friendly, just genuinely nice. also the food, my childhood, crazy nights and experiences, the open spaces and open roads, etc etc--i could really go on and on.
What are the challenges of living where you are as a foreigner?
i'm challenged day in day out just to keep sane here. you could say i do not like this country. but i have serious depression problems and dream of utopias.
How are you making money in your new country?
i am unemployed, and on 'the dole'. though not for long, and must get work soon and am looking for some shite job. i would like to move back to us but can't get english wife to do it. i live here because i have an irish passport. i don't (and i am serious) believe in private property or money, much less capitalism and the hell that is the world today. i believe people naturally want to work. i think our absolute birthright is a decent home and plenty of healthy food, even if we have never worked a day in our life. but people WANT to work, at least something like 15 hours a week, which is plenty. and real work, to make the world as beautiful as it should be. i believe we are violently violated and manipulated from birth into this 'system'. behold the great, evil powers (and no, not 'god'). i long ago figured something out on my own, then shortly afterwards had it confirmed by bertrand russell: 'they' could, if they WANTED to, create paradise on earth, TOMORROW. but they never will.
What are some of the pleasant surprises you've encountered in your new home?
i try to make the most of things, so i do make some effort with these gormless, mean little dullards. but i have my limits. no pleasant surprises (i've lived here before and hadn't formulated anything yet--but something seemed wrong with the place). ok, the dole and nhs. the nhs truly is a wonder, from an american point of view. the dole, or benefit, too. a huge percentage of people get some sort of income support and/or housing benefit. the downsides are great and many. people are very complacent, that's one. also, the english aren't ALL bad. they do have those characteristics that everyone knows about (as it is after all the dominant culture--it trumps american culture in many ways). most people here are simply just indoctrinated like americans, and don't think about the outside world too much (unless it's in the paper or on tv). but perhaps even britain is changing.
What are some of the unanticipated problems?
this time around, after healing for six years in denver, i came here with the insane, very stupid idea that i could win over the whole damn town. wrong! and a waste of time and effort. the english will be the english. and they ain't impressed. and god they hate americans. am i a fanatic? yes! but many americans, bless them, loved me! the english love nothing. i wish i could remember what my brother said just tonight (we were in the v & a museum tea room visiting on his short layover in london before heading on to malta), but something about a guy he knew in chicago, english, a certain type of nasty (that wasn't his word i don't think) that doesn't exist in america--but just walk the halls of the v & a to get some idea of it in its full force.
What are some advices you have for Americans who also want to get out?
don't come to england! (unless, of course, you're an anglo american, in which case you'll love it. amazing what i've learned about certain americans just by living in years of agony in this place). also, i've lived in korea, and most would not find it to their liking for too long, though i spent three years there and did love the people. as for spain, my other country, much good to be found there. i keep holding out that cuba or south america with its bolivarian revolution will be the true breath of fresh air i seek. but i somehow don't think it will be. could china or russia hold the key? i say this: america, turn off your fucking tv's, you are manipulated in ways you can't imagine. give the indians their land back, fight the evil anglo-american government, take your kids out of school, re-start the sexual revolution, keep looking to the future (america's greatest strength and uniqueness, this looking forward to a better world), but create the radical, beautiful society that you can and must create!... i realize this sounds ridiculous, crazy, and it is of course.
i have so many great memories of people from my childhood. i think they're still there. still, i have no hope for america or the world (well, i do, but it's not the place for that long conversation here). america is too big, for one. it's now a police/military state. etcetera.