If someone asked me 30 years ago if I would want to live overseas I would have instantly said no. If someone asked me 20 years ago the same question after I had completed a one year tour in Okinawa with the Marines I still would have said no. If someone asked me 10 years ago after I had been to Okinawa a second time, I might have given it a second thought.
I don't think I just woke up one morning and decided I wanted to live overseas. It did start when I worked in Sarajevo. I saw a side of living overseas that I didn't see as a Marine. Travel, culture, befriend locals, it was very neat to say the least.
Then I started traveling all over the world and this more than ever had me thinking about living overseas.
I did go work in Baghdad, not sure if that really counts, but after that came Jeddah (Saudi Arabia). Saudi was a big plunge into expat life, but believe me that is one place that I can't even say it would be nice to visit, certainly not nice to live there.
Well you may or may not know the rest of the story, then came Montevideo and now Colombo.
Whats the best part about being an expat? Well I guess it all depends on your situation. I have to admit that I am pretty blessed with my job and perks. But for every good thing there is about living overseas to me all of that is pretty much nothing considering that I am away from family and friends in the States.
I know there is always Skype and email and video calls but nothing beats being home, which is why I always need my America break. That being I need to go back to the States at least once a year. Maybe that doesn't make me a true expat, probably, but that's just me.