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07/18/2013

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Susan Broadwell

are you moving back to the states then? what has prompted moving back? Love reading your posts

Christie Wilkin

Thanks Susan. We have visited North America once a year since we moved to Australia three years ago, and this trip was one of those visits. However it is very likely that we will be moving back to Pittsburgh within the next twelve months.

Karen McKee

Hi Christie. I just found your blog and have been reading it with great interest. Our family is from Pittsburgh, but our daughter has a burning desire to move to Melbourne for 6 months or a year. Why Melbourne/Australia you ask? Several reasons: During a semester in London, she became good friends with a number of 20-something Australians, mostly from Melbourne, who were working in the UK. Additionally, no matter where she traveled in Europe she seemed to meet fun-loving Australians. Plus, from a random contest, she was selected to be the VIP at Australia Day on January 26 while she was in London. These coincidences made her convinced that she was meant to go to Australia and not just on vacation. Furthermore, the Australians' camaraderie, their love for life and travel, and their optimism greatly attracted her. As a graduation requirement for her degree from Penn State - Major: Recreation, Parks, and Tourism Management & Minor: Business - she must get an internship. Her dream would be to do that internship in Australia. Anyway, as a Pittsburgher living in Melbourne, I was wondering if you could give us any insight or advice. How is the economy there? Do you think it would be hard for her to relocate? If you had been a single person instead of moving there with your family, do you think you would have found it difficult? She is under the impression that Australians are super friendly, but your blog on eating out made me curious if they are not as friendly as she has come to believe. Anything you could tell us would be greatly appreciated. BTW, if you happened to stop by the Three Rivers Regatta during your recent visit to Pittsburgh, you may have encountered my daughter. She was working the information booth and the sand sculpture exhibit.

Christie Wilkin

Hi Karen, We have found Australians in general to be very welcoming and friendly. I would think your daughter would do well, but she would have to be willing to jump in and take the initiative to meet people. If she were doing an internship, she would have that as a natural place to begin. She could also join expat groups---I have contacted several and have been on their distribution lists. There seem to be many events geared toward singles. There are definitely cultural differences---reading the book Culture Shock! Australia would be a good place to start. There are also several books and websites written specifically for people emigrating to Australia or moving here temporarily with lots of useful information. Hope that helps--and all the best to your daughter!

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