Living overseas is sometimes a great thing, and sometimes a ball-ache of the highest order – the kind of ache that creeps from your balls, to your gut and then inches slowly towards your spine as you try and unpick the byzantine fuckwittery of whichever country you happen to live in.
I’ve yet to experience the joys of registering births and trying to obtain paperwork for my son, that herculean sham is to come and I know my own country will make it bloody difficult. In the interim I’m more concerned with the strange things that get thrown up by the day to day living and the struggle to anticipate costs I don’t know if I’ll have. For example – one particular issue that got thrown up was the lack of a particular medicine needed for my wife in the country we live in – having to send out for this like a takeaway to another country was in many ways absurd, but an example of a sudden $500+ expense neither of us knew was coming.
So cashflow. If you are earning in one currency and spending in another – especially if using a credit card based in your home nation it becomes about the movement of funds. I suppose it’s an example of my anxiety that I’m now stockpiling my asian currency should there be a problem while letting debt in my home country sit there for a few months. Is this sensible – I don’t know – but I’m of the opinion that at the moment better safe than sorry. I suppose as well that this is a symptom of the anxiety that everyone feels at this time. You want to be ready for anything and the only way you can reassure yourself is to say – well, at least I have a few grand in the bank in case it all goes tits up.
For me at least it is easy. I can buy an expensable item using a credit card and then reclaim here (for example ex-pat flights home). I think having a guide who could safely navigate us through the vagaries of the local costs would be a boon. There’s an idea for an enterprising ex-pat mom. I expect a credit at least – and maybe a free consultation.