About Me

About Me

The basics: I'm an American/Canadian expat who grew up living all over the world and never expected to find myself doing it again in my 40s and 50s. But here I am.

The backstory: After returning to the States for university, I'd settled down very happily to live what I considered to be  a 'normal' life in one country, making the occasional corporate move (within the US) and raising two sons and a series of enormous, good-natured Labrador retrievers. Living abroad again had never seriously crossed my mind. But when MrL(who'd also spent a good part of his growing-up years in Asia) came home one day and asked me how I'd feel about moving to South Korea, I surprised myself with the immediacy of my yes.  I'm not sure how most other women with two teenaged sons would have responded to this question, but my answer was unhesitating. We moved to Seoul in 2011 and from there to England in 2015.

The family:  I'm married to the long-suffering MrLogical, whose job as a consultant moves us from place to place. I am also the mother of two adult sons. Son#1, who has been out of University for several years, lives and works in Texas, and just got engaged.  Son#2 (who did all his secondary schooling in Korea) is in his last year of University in The Netherlands. We manage somehow to stay close and connected through the magic of Messenger, Snapchat and Skype. Now that the nest is empty, MrL and I expend most of our frustrated parental energy on our Boston Terrier cross,  Merlot.

Where are you from? I've spent my life trying to come up with a good answer to this question.  My go-to answer these days is 'North America,' but I still don't have a good one! Born in New England to a Canadian mother and American father, I moved to Bangkok when I was 3. By the time I returned to the US for university at 17, I'd gone to 9 schools in 4 countries and lived in a number of US states, and my parents were still in Germany. MrL's story was very similar. Between us, we've lived in: Thailand, Taiwan, the Philippines, Germany, Canada,  South Korea, and the United Kingdom, as well as in the US states of Massachusetts, Colorado, Oklahoma, Virginia, New York, Louisiana, Texas, Kentucky, Maryland, and Arizona.  MrL and I  presently own a house in Texas, where we lived for 6 years before moving to Korea, (although we know better than to presume to identify ourselves as bona fide Texans.) The expat community is full of people like us, for whom 'home' is more of a feeling than a place.
Bangkok, 1970s

What's a TCK? In the simplest terms, a TCK (Third Culture Kid) is a child who spends a significant part of childhood outside of his or her own (or 'passport') culture, neither fully part of their own culture, nor fully belonging to the culture in which they are living.  'MrL and I both grew up as TCKs,  moving between Asia, the US, and Europe with our fathers' careers as intelligence officers/linguists during the Cold War. (and, yes, we met each other in one of those postings, dated briefly, moved to two different continents, and reconnected years later.  It's a pretty good story.)  Like most TCKs, we're flexible, adaptable, friendly, curious, and comfortable just about anywhere we find ourselves.  Bonus:  we'll eat pretty much anything. 

What I do when I'm not packing, unpacking, or moving: I've taught German and English/ ESL/TEFL at all levels, from kindergarten to University, in three countries and a number of US states. Although my career has been primarily in language education, my degrees were in literature, which these days, simply means that I'm a compulsive reader who occasionally thinks, Hmm, what would Freud have made of that?  When my boys were small, I worked as a copy editor and copywriter, and I even did a stint after grad school working as a staffer on Capitol Hill.  I am a lover of spoken and written language, obscure etymologies, and almost any book I can get my hands on. 

Where am I now:  Bath, in the United Kingdom.

Where I'm going next: Germany, sometime in 2019

About this site

This blog was started in April of 2011, as we were preparing to move to Seoul. I wanted to not only record our experiences as we returned to living abroad, but also share them with my (very widely-scattered) friends and family. The name Asia Vu was a tongue-in-cheek homage to our unexpected return to life in Asia (and living abroad in general.)  I anguished a bit about changing the name of the blog when we moved to the UK, but finally decided to let it stand.  What other phrase could ever capture this bizarre experience of stepping back into a world so new and, simultaneously, so very familiar?

Travel Wherever we're living, MrL and I take every opportunity we can to explore  the part of the world we find ourselves in, and we love to travel (slightly) off the beaten track. Living in Asia and England has moved us closer to some slightly more exotic places, but we've learned to make the most of every place we live, at home or abroad.  We've hiked through underground lava tubes in Arizona, gone wreck diving in Bali, trekked through the jungle in Belize, and gone fell walking in England's Lake District (hint: bring walking poles).  Most recently, we cycled through Tuscany with a group of friends.  We like to explore on foot (or a bike!) and while we usually visit an area's main tourist attractions, we're always looking for that extra something that makes for a unique and authentic experience (warning:  I have a special affinity for offbeat museums and crypts) We round out our adventures by staying in interesting or unusual(not necessarily expensive) hotels/ B&Bs and seeking out eating and drinking establishments that combine great food and drink with a little 'something extra.' 


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