My Story

I recently moved to Vienna with my husband of five years from New York and boy, are things different!  Traveling is fraught with organizational problems, so just imagine how much bigger they become when moving internationally; even more so when moving to a country with another language. While anticipating that there’d be a learning curve for the language, shopping, public transportation, and even meeting people; in my naivety, I didn’t expect that substitutions would have to be found for familiar everyday products.

Now while I’m having a pretty good experience, there are some things that I wish I’d been more aware of or had paid more attention to before I started out.  Yet, some things are remarkably similar.  Everyone works, provides for their family, and has a social life just like anywhere else.  I am pleasantly surprised at the diversity of individuals living in this city but a little disappointed that, unlike New York, everyone seems to stick to their comfort zone.

This blog follows me finding my place here in my new country – from expat to citizen – covering the things that interest, inspire, and even disappoint me in my journey. I anticipate that its going to be one heck of a journey.  Welcome to my life.

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40 Responses to My Story

  1. Where in the Bahamas are you originally from? My grandparents have a house on Rum Cay and my sister, cousin, and I would go there every summer. It’s my favorite place in the world. 🙂

    • I was born in Nassau but my maternal grandparents are from Andros (grandfather) and Abaco (grandmother) while my paternal grandparents are from Eleuthera (grandfather) and Turks & Caicos (grandmother) – formerly a part of The Bahamas. I’ve been to most of The Bahamas and I’m glad to hear that you find it as enjoyable and mesmerizing as I do! The Bahamas is the best place in the world, for me, to summer.

      • I was intriqued by your sign in name and was more curious to hear that your grand mother was from Turks Island. I too am from Turks Island but have lived in Nassau for most of my life. What was your grand mother’s name and which one of the islands was she from?

      • Hi Lorraine, wow, small world! My grandmother was a Godet from Turks Island but had lived most of her youth and adult life in New Providence. Which island are you from; Turks or Caicos? When was the last time you visited?
        Thanks for reading, hope you enjoyed.

  2. It’s definitely the best place in the world for me also! I have been to Andros, Nassau and San Sal, but never to Abaco or Eleuthera. I’m just so jealous that you were able to grow up there! I only experienced it during the summers, and once during the spring, but even just thinking about it gives me butterflies! 🙂

  3. Hej from Sweden,

    Wow Bahamian in Austria, I know what you must be going through. I as an Afro American married to a Swedish man living in Sweden, can read between your written lines and they speak volumes.
    We are as much an attraction to their culture as they are to us. I am sure the pleasures of Austria and your wonderful new experiences will outweigh all the rest. It has here in Sweden for me. Although after nearly 10 years, I am still the attraction to watch. Oh well.
    Welcome to my blog and see how I cope: http://gullringstorpgoatsblog.wordpress.com
    It’s all about how I was once a city girl now a country gal with my goats.

    • Oh my gosh – from city to country; how are you coping!! LOL, I’m sure with a major dose of humor and self-confidence. Every change is a major shock at first, but with a positive attitude things tend to work out well.
      Yes, I get a LOT of attention but so far its been mostly good; and when its not, my NYC personality tends to take care of it, lol.
      I am heading over to your blog now; it sounds exciting and I expect its filled with tons of anecdotes! Thank you for reading and commenting on mine. Keep reading, this journey is far from over, lol and its bound to give you a laugh or two!

  4. Hello!

    Thank you so much for subscribing to my blog last month. I look forward to reading yours, and wish you much happiness in the new year—in Austria, or wherever you may roam.

    Best wishes,
    Marci

  5. Hej from Sweden,

    Wow!! Thanks for clicking the “LIKE” button on my most recent post: “What Brings a Tear to This Country Gal’s Eye?” I’m glad you liked it.

  6. Cecil Newry says:

    Wow…what a delightful read. You’re are miles away from the little street we grew up on. I hope to read more on your adventures. Be blessed!

    • Hey there C!
      LOL, yeah, living in Austria is a pretty adventurous move when one stops to think about it, isn’t it? Still have to say, the happiest days of my childhood were spent sitting in my window-seat, overlooking our quiet little street, eating sweet native fruits and enjoying the sunshine and the sounds of birds. Ahh, everything changes, doesn’t it?
      Thanks for stopping by and joining me on this journey.

  7. jusme says:

    Happy birthday DeJewel!

  8. Cameron says:

    Hi, I am a Bahamian in Austria too! Always thought I was the only one until today my daughter was googling and found you. I was born and raised in Nassau and went to Queen’s College. Both of my parents live in Georgetown, Exuma, where my family originally settled way back when in the Bahamas. I have been living in Austria for 16 years now and my wife is Austrian. Took me a long time to get used to living here, but after all these years I have finally assimulated. Just wanted you to know, you’re not the only one, cause it feels like that sometimes. 8^)

    • Wow! I’m really glad to make your acquaintance Cameron! How are you?!
      I will definitely agree that I definitely felt like the only one and after awhile, resigned to the idea that all the Bahamians where in England or Germany, lol. You’ve made my evening. 🙂
      Many warm greetings to your family and thank you for contacting me. 🙂

      • Alison says:

        Cameron and A Bahamian in Austria, my husband, Nicholai, is from Nassau and went to C.B. Bethel HS. (I’m African American and used to be the managing director of the Nassau Guardian). We live in the 5th district. Would be great to connect sometime this holiday season!

      • Hey Alison! I just sent you a message on FB. You’re actually in Vienna – how exciting is that! Now I know there are four of us here!
        It would be lovely to meet you and your husband. We’ll connect further on FB.
        Thanks for stopping by and reaching out!

  9. Hej from Sweden !
    Just returned from a trip to London and its been non stop ever since. Babies galore! I just love them and so happy that our Pumpkin hit the jackpot for us with 2 girls! They will stay here with us at Gullringstorp as will Iris’ little girl. I will be looking for good homes for the boys, however. Although, I was just thinking to keep Poppy’s boy and have him neutered and he can stay here at Gullringstorp with his mother forever. Thanks for stopping ´by and liking my recent post. Welcome back anytime!

  10. I’m glad you found me and said hello. I’m very interested to read about your life in Austria.

  11. You’re story is very interesting and I’m looking forward to following along!

  12. Hi there, I just found your blog, looking forward to reading more about your experiences. I am a fellow city wohner to use the colloquial. I wish you all the best as you make yourselves at home here.

    • Hi there Islandrain! Thank you for reading and your very kind wishes. I’m having a blast here in Austria; my current experiences are very different from when I first came here, but I guess I’m acclimating and intergrating without realizing it. ‘Bloom where you’re planted’, oder?!

  13. bethbyrnes says:

    This is wonderful and I look forward to your experiences. I spent some time in Nassau and have never seen more beautiful foliage, water and sand. The snorkeling there was exceptional, as was the food, but most importantly, the Bahamians are the nicest people on earth.

  14. Hey sis I just wanted to thank you for being such an amazing friend. Thank you for your support and for all of your beautiful comments to my blog. I love you Lil Sis, may God continue to bless you and give you the desires of your heart. 🙂

    • Hey Big Sis! You’re welcome 🙂 However, I remember something my mom told me a long time ago and that you, via your actions, showed to be true: to have good friends, you must be a good friend. So, truly, it’s me that should say thank you! Love you too hon, and may your blessings be returned a thousandfold!

  15. polianthus says:

    oh its a whole different planet over here in Europe 🙂 – the products, the culture, the interactions, the having people over for long dinners, the stuff in the shops – I found in my travels and living in different places that people stick to themselves where-ever they are. There are whole expat communities of English speakers in big cities in Europe who never learn the local language and hence never feel welcome in their new home of choice. The first, best and most important thing you can do to fit in is to learn German – trust me. It wont be easy but your life willl go from potentially black and white to technicolour.

    • Hi polianthus, thanks for visiting, commenting, and your advice (although, I’m still waiting for the technicolor part to kick in).

      • polianthus says:

        don’t expect too much too soon, its not really a big place Vienna, probably quite insular in some ways and there is no way you can compare it to New York, it may take a while for you to settle in. Probably upwards of a year – very different to the US. Good luck.

  16. polianthus says:

    Hey there just spotted you are following, how nice, thank you. I look forward to seeing what you are up to as well. I have a list of great places to eat in Vienna somewhere, I am guessing if your husband is Viennese you wont need it though. but if you are interested i will see if I can find it!

    • Although he is Viennese and I’ve managed to discover a few spots in the three years I’ve been here, new information is always welcome. If you are able to find it, I’d love to share it on a post (with your permission, of course).

  17. CLove says:

    So interested in interviewing u… thanks… Skype…clovebah…please reach out if interested…

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