27 Comments
May 12, 2022Liked by Nancy Whiteman

"To find one's paradise, one needn't travel far, only well."

--Marty Rubin

[source: https://discoverquotes.com/paradise/]

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Oct 6, 2021Liked by Nancy Whiteman

I must admit, reruns of "Crime, Disse Ela" has made my transition easier.

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Oct 6, 2021Liked by Nancy Whiteman

I am wondering if most expats have kids or close family members in the States. If I moved abroad, most of my family could never afford to visit. I would really miss them. I imagine they would miss me too - especially on holidays and main events - like graduations, weddings and birthdays. I would have to have a burning desire to leave. Trump was a great impetus to vacate the States. But, like I said, there are still a lot of battles to be fought here, and somebody has to step up to the plate.

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Some expats with kids and/or close family members in the States move for precisely that reason.

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Oct 6, 2021Liked by Nancy Whiteman

Let's hear it for the crazies! Our story is very much like Carol's: Sell it all and move. We had never been to Portugal, either, but having visited Europe several times, doing research on various countries for several years, and waiting out pandemic 1.0, we made the leap. Our place isn't "home", either, but it's good for now. We're looking forward to living in several places around the country before we decide to settle...or not.

One thing I'm curious about is the mental aspect of keeping a house in the states. Does having that place as a fallback inhibit your ability to fully commit to the new country? (That's probably a question for one of the expat forums, but Jim's comment made me think of it.)

Thanks for another though-provoking post!

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Oct 6, 2021Liked by Nancy Whiteman

It seems to me that having a home in the States just gives you more options.

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Good point. I guess it's an option that we considered and then decided against. But I can understand someone wanting that option available.

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I misspoke. Not "Jim's comment", it was Greg's comment. I was meeting Jim for lunch today. Had that on my mind.

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I am planning to move to Portugal alone, and it will be sight unseen as you did. When someone says I am brave, I usually reply by saying that they are braver for intending to stay in the U.S.

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Nov 13, 2021Liked by Nancy Whiteman

Agree, I too am moving And not sure yet where home will be. Me and my pup Sophie.

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A lot of good points. We left the states in 2015 when my wife got it into her head to fulfill a long-time desire to be an international teacher. We sold off most of our stuff, rented out our house in Miami, put a lot of stuff in storage and off to Chengdu, China. 2 years later we sold the house in Miami (it's now worth about $350k more than we sold it for). the one thing we regret the most is the amount of stuff we put into storage. The amount of money we have spent storing replaceable items has more than gone over their replacement costs. My advice is only store the stuff you can't replace. Thankfully we are going back over the holidays to finally clean out the storage unit.

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author

Greg, I am always amazed at the people that spend thousands of dollars storing "replaceable" items worth hundreds of dollars. Whole-heartedly agree. I am suggesting that one might consider storing antiques that they may have an attachment to, fine artwork, etc...not a blender of a comforter.

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As we explore and move through this decision process, I'm finding that the size of the "safety net" I'm comfortable with is also shifting. A couple of months ago, I was feeling like we should hold onto our condo in the States and keep a lot of things in storage in case we decided that we wanted to return to the Bay Area. Now, it feels like doing those things would function like an anchor that could prevent me from really diving in and committing to our future home.

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Really enjoying all of your posts! You brought up some great points in this one.

We are coming to Portugal, again, to check things out. Pickleball, is a sport I would really miss. Can you tell me where Denise found a place to play?

Thanks for sharing all that you’re learning as an expat.

Marta

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Denise played in Vau, near Óbidos...mostly 3.0 players.

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I'm not in Portugal but one of my online Portuguese language teachers said that, while pickleball isn't popular in Portugal, that another racquet sport, padel, is popular. Have you tried it?

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author

Thanks for reading…you can find out about our experience with both sports in this post https://expatinportugal.substack.com/p/searching-for-pickleball-we-found

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I guess what I saw was Beach Tennis. It looks a bit more tame than padel.

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Thanks, Cary. I think I saw it being played on the beach. I talked to some of the players and they were so friendly and welcoming. I will try it when I go back.

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Just wanted to say that I'm enjoying your posts! It makes me feel like we're not the only "crazy" American people doing this move (I'm 66 and husband is 70). We just arrived in Portugal 5 weeks ago. We had never visited Portugal and we, too sold our home (Arizona) and most of our 40+ years together of possessions. We didn't want to wait until the pandemic was over (if that ever happens) to do scouting trips and then have to come back to the states to start the D7 paperwork, so in early 2021 we just decided to get our things in order, get the visa applications in process, and make plans to move to Portugal. We chose a furnished condo to lease for 1 year about 10 minutes by train to Cascais by doing some video walk-throughs and keeping our fingers crossed that we made a good decision. Our condo does have heat and air conditioning - the heat was a priority for us. Not sure this is the place we eventually want to call "home" but it's a good starting point for exploring other areas of this beautiful country. Hope you and Denise enjoy the journey!

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Carol, we are likely vizjinhas (neighbors) as we are 8 minutes from the train station. If you and your husband want to meet for a drink or meals sometime, please email me. ncwhiteman@gmail.com

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Fellow Arizonan here (Tucson) doing the same with 88 yr old Mom, hubs, me, daughter and her daughter… on to the Azores!

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We saw an episode of Mediterranean Life (HGTV) before we moved about couple who moved to the Azores…it was magical. But Denise vetoed the island thing…good luck

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Don’t be so sure about being safer in Texas with that sign, specially outside city limits 😁

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What strikes me, there is always the “ trump “ thrown in a content. Please note I was nor I am his supporter. And if the current administration in US is so great, why everyone is leaving ?... 🤔

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I will only respond for myself. While I was an Obama supporter, I fear that his presidency awakened a racist undercurrent in the country...a backlash if you will, allowed Trump to capitalize on the fear and loathing that had previously been a bit below the surface. Though we were heartened by President Biden's election, we were troubled by the more than 70m Americans that had lived through the prior 4 years and thought it was a good thing. Further compounding this is the destruction of the traditional Republican party. While this is not the only reason we wanted to move to Europe, it certainly was a contributing factor on my part.

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For me, this move has been a dream since I was teen, and is more about stretching myself and embracing parts of myself that have lain dormant for years in the name of safety and conformity. Politics have played a part in goosing me into action, for some of the reasons Nancy mentioned in her comment, but honestly they are way down on the list of influences that made us start the process now rather than at some other time in our lives.

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