to be fair I don't think HK is the best first place to live as an expat. I think if you want to experience living abroad it's probably easier to live in a similar culture first to understand how it works.
If you like big spaces, parks and quiet then yes HK will be hard to get used to.
However once you get used to it it's pretty easy to live. No insecurity, easy to travel in and out HK, outside the rent most of the things are cheap, lots of nice hiking places and so on.
It's not my first time working in a different country/city but this is how it works for me. You need to establish routines, find the places to shop, eat, drink and so on. Meet new people, make friends and do stuff you love doing and that makes you happy. It's never easy moving abroad, but once you passed the first couple months it should get easier.
It's a busy city, and there are a lot of cool things to do.
That's the single biggest problem for many expat who come to HK. They seem to forget that they are coming to Asia and not a western country. Just because it was a British colony doesn't make it a western country/city. It's not for this place to adapt to expats, it's for expats to change their ways if they want to be happy.
While it may be harder to move from London to HK than to Sydney or Washington, HK is one of the easiest place in outside the West to settle in with hardly any language problem and access to just about everything you could want.
A little stint in Moscow, Khartoum, Beijing or Manila or Jakarta might put things into perspective for some expats. Then they might redefine hardship...
Sure, both of these statements are true, but they do not tell you HOW to achieve the changes necessary and more than telling a person with clinical depression to "buck up and become happy" works.
The OP need strategies to learn to cope, not a lecture on why they shouldn't feel the way they do.
"HOW to achieve the changes "
OPEN MIND as opposed to CLOSEDCASKET (Sorry meant mind :-))
You don't actually need to adapt, change, or like Hong Kong. None of those things are listed on the visa requirements. Not doing these things does not make life here impossible. Not doing them won't make you a miserable depressive, not doing them won't mean you can't cope with life anymore.
You might earn the scorn of a few posters on here, but so what? You aren't breaking any laws, abusing anyone or being false. You are just being you, and if you're fine with that, then so am I.
This isn't France, where you do actually have to get into and understand the culture. But then the French are pretty much self-sufficient, they can run their country, Hollande jokes aside, without the need to import skilled management to head things up. That puts the expat on the back foot and the French in front. Plus the French culture in my view is pretty cool, so I embrace it with open arms when I'm there, the good and the bad, the wine and the foie gras. Well, maybe not the foie gras.
Hong Kong is not in that camp. For a variety of reasons, cultural, education system, history, they need the skilled expat input. And to the average skilled expat person, sat in his comfy house, looking out on his pristine lawn, it's not that attractive, so there has to be some give on Hong Kong's side. If they were to demand or expect everyone to speak Cantonese, and to understand and take part in the culture, they'd be a dead backwater town.
OP can quite happily ignore Hong Kong, and still enjoy life and get on here. She just has to realise that is an option. And it is OP, it really is. And you'll likely meet more than a few expats in your time here doing exactly that.
HK doesn't NEED the skilled expat, some of the companies(foreign mostly) want it and the government is happy to support it and that's a different ball game. You have major delusions of your value if you think you're indispensable. If every expat left town, HK would absolutely be hurting but like every place it would adapt and would eventually grow into something different in some ways a little worse, in other ways a little better.
It's typical colonial attitude to think the natives can't do without them yet every time they left, places continued to evolve and often for the better. HK WAS a colony hence the reason why there's a long tradition of expats and not because it would wither and die without them.
Is it just me, or is this the same old busted arse, repetitive, argumentative, tit for tat, twat waffle that ruins nearly every interesting topic on this forum ?
This forum is well and truly overdue for a take no prisoners purge...
Last edited by Skyhook; 06-01-2014 at 07:17 PM.
Last edited by Natfixit; 06-01-2014 at 07:55 PM.