Thursday, 31 July 2014

Being a Saffa expat

I am a very positive person - well aware there's good and bad in both my birth country and where I live now (my grandparents come from here anyway)... But in my dealings with expats from all over the world there are things that only seem to befall South African expats... And even though I couldn't care less what people think re my personal decision to now stay in England.. There are many that get a LOT of flack from Saffas in SA still.. Even after many years of living abroad...

- We're unpatriotic - which is nonsense... The Saffas I know keep the Saffa culture of foods etc alive wherever they live.. But also make an effort to integrate into their country, which is the right thing to do n a host country

- It's assumed everyone leaves because of political reasons - not so! This is far from the truth. Yes some leave due to crime but many leave for better job prospects, keen to travel the world (hard to do on the Rand!), have business interests internationally, family abroad, medical reasons - NHS is a godsend for many etc.

- holding dual passports is frowned upon by many in SA - The mindset is often (sadly!) well if you get a host country passport (which costs ALOT of money over the years by the way) then you have chosen your 'side'.... And you should give up your Saffa passport - no way!

None of my New Zealand, Australian, Danish, American, French, German etc friends and clients feel the need to justify why they moved abroad as they're not given the stick that Saffa expats are given.

I'm sure we have all lost 'friends' along the way who feel it necessary to impose their opinions on why THEY think we left and where we should actually be living... A good friend doesn't do this.

So.. Even though I don't feel I need to justify why we live abroad.. I can see why others do as they're quizzed re their decision often and undergo a lot of flack from other Saffas for leaving.

By the way.. The type of expat who pulls SA down to try and justify why they're living abroad - they're few and far between... I've met two in 12 years. And I never bothered pursuing a friendship with them as that kind of thinking annoys me. Highly!!!!!

But in general... Saffas abroad have to put up with a lot of flack that expats of other countries do not.

Sent from Jenniflower's iPad

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