An Expat Talks about Living in Hamilton, Bermuda
What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?
Describe how you "dreamed" expat life would be before you moved overseas. Please provide as much detail as possible.
I didn't have long to dream as the decision to move here happened within two months. However I bought new clothes and planned my life with certain expectations some of which have proved true but several not so valid. I shall put this under numbered paragraphs:
1. Clothes - I envisaged smart work style clothes would be the normal wear even though I was not working professionally myself. So I bought smart tops and business trousers, jackets and smart shoes.
2. Furniture - I hoped to buy a really comfortable reclining chair such as an Ekorness swivel one and to sit in the sun drenched window reading ....
3. Outdoor life - i imagined spending much of my life in the sun and outside
4. Health care - I imagined an efficient clean and clinical environment with easy access to American style quality practice in both doctor and dentist
How has your expat experience met the expectations you dreamed about before you moved abroad?
1. There are clothes shops on island that's ell suitable clothes at reasonable prices, even an M&S store in Hamilton. Don't bring lots with you!
2. Plenty of second hand furniture available and then you are happy to just sell it on when you go home.
3. Water activities right up into mid December and lots of fish to see when snorkelling.
4. The health care we have needed has been delivered in professional manner and we have no problems with the quality.
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How has your expat experience NOT met the expectations you dreamed about before you moved abroad?
1. Most of my smart trousers ended up in a return suitcase to UK - too hot for most of year to wear trousers and the ones I bought were far too heavy and warm. The tops also were too much, dull colours relatively speaking and wrong materials for the humidity. Most of the time I wear shorts and t shirts and casual life in Bermuda is not as posh as I had imagined. Many people wear gym kit while out and about, most are in bright colours.
2. Furniture is hard to get on the island and what is available without special import is basic and not made to last. Certainly no Ekorness chairs and the look-alike ones are so uncomfortable - fortunately something you discover when trying them out in the shop. We had to import a bed at huge expense and did that after trying three different local ones and having many nights of disturbed sleep. I will not be taking any furniture back to UK with me.
3. It is too hot and humid for several months of the year to stay outside for much of the day. So indoors and airy conditioning rules.
4. The doctors offices we attended are not as open and clinical as those we used in NHS UK. They are professional but the appointments are far ahead and the investigations take forever. I can understand why expats fly off island to get things done.
We have to wait for three months for a dentist appointment - that's asking for one asap. The routine ones are five months ahead and that's common on several dental practices on the island.
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