Sunday, December 6, 2015

Über Rexpat


There was a film about the expats in Prague. It was low budget, über-specific, and full of Kafka references and in jokes suitable only for wannabe writers, drunken English teachers and other hapless fuckers with high expectations drowning in a sea of cheap beer. But in the bowels of that particular bog lies a sad truth:

We keep coming back. The film Rex-patriates parodies the sad losers, exuberant dreamers and trust fund slackers who can find no other place to call home. The city, the beer and the women are all beautiful, cheap and gorgeous. But unlike 'creative and cultured' cities like Paris or (recently) Berlin, Prague does in fact suffer fools gladly. I lived in Prague from 1997 to 2008, bouncing back and forth between the States until those bounces became fewer and further between. But even after a failed six year mission to wipe the smelly hipsters off the face of Berlin (2009 to 2015), I returned to Prague. Hi, my name is Craig. I am a rexpat and an exuberant dreamer with no funds in which to trust. So I make my meager way in this world. My way. Every day.

 Já jsem vůl

In past lives I was a Praguelodyte and a Dunkin' Berliner. Now I am a loose can(n)on, a feckless wanderer, a blogger without a cause. Sixteen years spent in Prague and Berlin eating and drinking several metric tonnes of fried cheese, beer, sausage and donuts has made me what I am today: The Wide Body Jetsetter. I am dangerously close to paying for two seats on the plane.

Serial Expatriate

I keep arguing that if you live abroad long enough, you can shed the expatriate label and become something else. What that 'something' is is yet to be determined. I'd like to think I am an American refugee, but this is now not the time nor place for that argument. I have in fact fled my home country in search of a better life. But as I am from a rich country, did not leave with bombs falling behind me, and I did not arrive in a rubber dinghy with children clinging to the sides, I'm just a garden variety rexpat. I'm not a digital nomad; I don't live on an beach in Thailand writing travel blogs and/or designing websites like my good friends Ari and Michael. I'm jealous of them and those like them. But I may just lack the true grit needed to weather the humidity, malaria and mosquito storms. That and the fact that I hate the heat. I wear a Hawaiian shirt in the frozen meat locker of Central Europe.

Stayed Tuned

Travel, fucker. Burn the job, the house, the kids (just kidding; take them with you) and get out of the system which is bringing you down. Choose your own life, your own rules, your own way. The only thing keeping you from doing exactly what you are meant to do in your life is fear. That's OK. I have it too, every time I relocate without a plan. In this blog I will tell you all about the good, the bad and the ugly of living abroad, dodging red tape, traveling on a shoestring and living abroad long term. I will probably also include various scraps of all the other 20 years of travel stories which didn't fit into my Prague or Berlin parameters. Sometimes I will just tell you the best place to get a kickass burrito or a truly dope pizza. Or maybe just dope (I'll have to ask my stoner friends, though).


chez loup said...

Welcome back! I guess I have to visit Prague one of these days, just to get a feel for your new playground.

Do you have an instagram account? Don't swing your baseball bat, I'm not a hipster :)

chez loup (aka Fruiteo X, cause I can't decide on anything in my life)

Craig Robinson said...

Instagram is a hipster app, ain't it? ;p
Actually, there is no way in HOPPING HELL I can/will keep up with all the social media. Thanks for reading though. The next post will decide what to do with your life for ya, I promise. :D

- Big Sir