reply to post by Chickensalad
I guess that metaphor is not clear for me to interpret- I am sorry!
I can offer you that France is a nice to place to live. I am originally American and have lived here for 20 years.
But it does have socialized medicine ( the best quality care in the world). There are no homeless people, except those who choose to be so for
personal reasons. A base quality of life is pretty much guaranteed for all- including immigrants, whether they are legal (with papers) or not.
Since the revolution, the people have held tightly the idea that the government is their servant, and keep the controls.
There is some sentiment arising the last few years that the people, despite their power, are now being abused by the immigrants who take advantage of
this. In my opinion, this groan starts to come way past the level the US has experienced... the idea of what abuse is differs. So if you have had any
discomfort with such things, it would be ten fold here. You woud have to get used to seeing a muslim man driving a new mercedes you paid for- while
he is unemployed and getting an income larger than yours based on how many children he is able to father (with his many wives he adds each year from
the village back home).
You would also have to get used to constant protests going on which are geared to make your life hell. Often the streets are blocked, the trains are
not running, trucks are not delivering, gas is not available, schools are closed, for days at a time. You will be met with much shock and repulsion if
you ever complain about this, as you are supposed to be supportive, no matter what the subject of their disrest is, and how it effects your life.
But you may have a very nice life anyway, have no debts, and be able to interact in politics fairly easily. Kids can get a good education when the
teachers are not on strike.There are a lot of benefits.
But in any case, learning the language is probably key to your happiness and ability to integrate the community wherever you go. If you know some
latin based language like spanish, then Spain, Italy or France will be easier to learn. The northern countries like Sweden and Holland are excellent
places to live too (I have many dutch friends) but their language seems terribly hard for us anglo-saxons to learn!!!
But you know, there is the financial situation to consider too.....
I recently spent the weekend with a friend who is very powerful in the banking industry, and she told me the people had no idea how close we came to a
catastrophy of "total global economic collapse"... she said we are not out of the forest yet either. I don't know if it is a good time to start
moving around at all.... probably nowhere is safe!