Sitting on the couch across from me, my sister in law mentions moving to Belize. Instantly I know that she has been on the same ex-pat websites, reading the same ex-pat articles that I have. I read about Belize too. It appealed to me because of the opportunity to save some money, but the downsides outweighed the possibility for me. No, for me it’s always been New Zealand. The outdoor loving, peaceful English speaking people seem to to be the perfect fit. Not to mention the excellent healthcare, schooling, and plethora of work available due to an unfortunate earthquake.
It seems I’m not the only one considering a move in the current climate. That’s what set off the research. I heard him say that if Donald Trump gets elected we really should move, and yes, we’ve joked about it before, but it sounded like more than that. Being in the mental state I have been, the research was very soothing. I delved into the world of expatriation. Every election year for as long as I can remember people have claimed that if their candidate doesn’t win they will leave the country. Often times, they claim they are moving to countries that have the very things that they believe will ruin ours. While I have always been a fan of fleeing the country for just about any reason, I’ve never truly entertained the idea, until now that is. The summary of results of the research are as follows.
Belize is a nice prospect for those who want to live a simpler life. There is Spanish to learn, fruit to eat, and rent of a suitable house and utilities can run you only $700 a month. Sadly, healthcare and security is not necessarily up to par. There’s Singapore for budding business elites. Clean streets, a death penalty for bringing in drugs, easy travel to Asia, and English are some of the many benefits of choosing this tiny little country. The downside is that I am not a budding business professional. There’s Canada, but I hate the cold. There’s Australia, but it just doesn’t quite fit. But oh, New Zealand. New Zealand is perfect. Sure, it’s not convenient to travel anywhere except Tahiti really, and they have earthquakes, but the pluses definitely win out. They speak English, they don’t waste their tax money on war, the landscape is beautiful, the weather familiar, and thanks to those earthquakes there is a high demand for construction workers of all levels to repair the damage. Yup, New Zealand wins.
Here’s the rub. I’ve lived in Pennsylvania my entire life, if you don’t count college. My entire family is here. Everyone I love is here. Everything I know is here. That’s terrifying to me, the thought that my world is so small. It’s never what I wanted, but it’s just not scary enough. It’s not enough to really push me into doing something completely different. I lack the self-confidence to believe that I am capable on my own to make a move and depend on me and my tiny family. And that’s the thing that makes me sadder than anything; that I doubt my ability to handle such a big change, that I refuse to demand something that I have dreamt my whole life of doing. At the same time, I am comfortable and comfortabilty has it’s virtues.