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ROOTS & WINGS
Yesterday, I was a guest at an evening activity with one of our vendors. We were divided into 2 teams by our hosts: two delightful chefs who are making names for themselves in the Öresund region. David Fernandes, who owns the S:t Gertrud Patisserie and Tareq Taylor, who made a name as the owner and master chef of acclaimed Malmö restaurant trappaner.

The activity was cooking our own dinner, under the leadership of our two chefs, and then sitting down to enjoy it. It was great fun, and the food was fantastic. One team (mine) was in charge of the starter: Potato & Jerusalem Artichoke Soup and the main dish: Seared Halibut Filets w/Cauliflower Purée. The other team was down in the Patisserie making a series of individual-serving size desserts: Dark Chocolate Panna Cotta, Crème Brulee, Crème Caramel, Crema Catalana, and black-current-dusted chocolate truffles.

There was even a cheese course that featured quince marmalade: a new one for me! I don't think I've ever eaten quince in any form; it was quite tasty. Did you know that the golden apples that Paris gave to Aphrodite were actually quinces? There is also a theory that quince could have been the forbidden fruit that Adam and Eve munched on.

Look at that, sidetracked onto the food tangent. As usual.

The whole point of my writing about yesterday evening to begin with was because of my fascination with the fact that both of the chefs were essentially third-culture kids. A Third Culture Kid, or TCK, is "someone who has spent a significant portion of their childhood in one or more cultures other than their own, thus integrating elements of those cultures and their own birth culture into a third & personal culture of their own." Some TCKs have parents who come from more than one culture, and who live in a third.

David is Portuguese, but grew up in Luxembourg and is now married to a Swedish woman and living in Sweden for the past 5 years. Tareq's father is from Jerusalem and his mom is half English and half Swedish. 3 of us at the event were Americans living in Sweden, all of whom have spent years in other parts of the world as well. Another participant was a Frenchwoman whose father came from Croatia, and who grew up partly in Australia. I'm a TCK, having been a military brat who spent six years of my under-18 years overseas.

I know so many people who qualify as TCKs and think it's a intriguing subject. How small the world grows sometimes! Just to satisfy my curiosity, drop me a comment and answer this informal poll for me, will you? My answer are first :)

1. Are your parents from the same culture? If not, where are they from?
2. Were you born in the country your parents (or a parent) came from? If not, where?
3. Did you spend time as a child (under 18) living in a different culture than your birth culture? How long? Where?
4. Did you go to school abroad or outside or your state/country?
5. Have you lived abroad as an adult (over 18)? If you lived abroad as a child, have you ever lived in the country of your birth?
6. How many times have you moved to a new residence?
7. Do you hold dual citizenship? If not, are you eligible to?
8. How many languages do you speak?
9. Do you consider yourself as belonging to a particular culture?
10. Is your spouse/significant other from the same culture as you?
 curious
mood: curious
music: Chasing Dorotea—Dreamer


Comments
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1. Are your parents from the same culture? If not, where are they from?
Yes, they are both Americans.

2. Were you born in the country your parents (or a parent) came from? If not, where?
Yes

3. Did you spend time as a child (under 18) living in a different culture than your birth culture? How long? Where?
Yes. We lived for 3 years in Belgium and 3 years in Germany, from 1976-1982.

4. Did you go to school abroad or outside or your state/country?
I went to college in Michigan, while my parents lived in Maryland, so half the country away from my family. Two of my first-year roommates had never been outside of their home towns before university.

5. Have you lived abroad as an adult (over 18)? If you lived abroad as a child, have you ever lived in the country of your birth?
Yes, I have lived for the past 12 years in Sweden. Other than this and the 6 years as a teenager, I've only lived in the US.

6. How many times have you moved to a new residence?
29 times

7. Do you hold dual citizenship? If not, are you eligible to?
No, but I'm eligible to apply for Swedish citizenship.

8. How many languages do you speak?
Two: English & Swedish. As a teenager I was fairly fluent in German.

9. Do you consider yourself as belonging to a particular culture?
It depends on who I'm around. Mostly I feel like a blend of Western European & American. My sense of humor is definitely American.

10. Is your spouse/significant other from the same culture as you?
No, my husband is Swedish. He lived for 4.5 years in the US.


Edited at 2009-02-04 08:15 pm (UTC)

An anthropologist I once knew referred to the TDK phenomenon as "permanent displacement" I feel it fits me better.

1. Nope - my Mom is Swedish and my Dad was an African-American from coal mining country in the Appalachian mountains.
2. By definition, Los Angeles is another country, so yes ;)
3. Yup - I have lived in Sweden for 24 years minus 6 months in Norway
4. Same as above
5. "Abroad" is relative, at this point. I have not spent more than few weeks at a time in the US as an adult.
6. 9 as a child, 12 as an adult
7. Yup
8. Swedish and English share mother-tongue status. I can be polite, ask for directions, order food and hotel rooms in French. My Norwegian is okay, but understandably gets mixed up with Swedish.
9. Western culture maybe, in a general sense.
10. Only by the above definition of my "culture" But otherwise, no.

haha! I think LA really qualifies as "another planet", don't you? :P

1. Are your parents from the same culture? Yes, both American

2. Were you born in the country your parents (or a parent) came from? Yes the US

3. Did you spend time as a child (under 18) living in a different culture than your birth culture? Nope

4. Did you go to school abroad or outside or your state/country? Yes I studied in France for one year in college.

5. Have you lived abroad as an adult (over 18)? I lived in my country of birth and in two other countries abroad.

6. How many times have you moved to a new residence? 14 times

7. Do you hold dual citizenship? Yes American and Swedish

8. How many languages do you speak? I speak a few languages but I fluent in only two these days- English & Swedish. My major in college was French with a minor in Italian. I've studied Russian, Polish, and Indonesian.

9. Do you consider yourself as belonging to a particular culture? I was profoundly influenced by my time living in Sweden so I'd say that I'm bicultural.

10. Is your spouse/significant other from the same culture as you? That's an even more complicated answer but no. He's a real TCK.

Indonesian! That must have been interesting! Polish seems damn hard to me, like all the Slavic languages.

I don't know why I'm even taking this poll...

1. Are your parents from the same culture? If not, where are they from?
Yes, they are both from Sweden. Southern Sweden both of them. Staffanstorp and Simrishamn.

2. Were you born in the country your parents (or a parent) came from? If not, where?
Yes I was. I was born at a hospital in Lund and we lived 5 miles away.

3. Did you spend time as a child (under 18) living in a different culture than your birth culture? How long? Where?
Nope.

4. Did you go to school abroad or outside or your state/country?
No.

5. Have you lived abroad as an adult (over 18)? If you lived abroad as a child, have you ever lived in the country of your birth?
No and No.

6. How many times have you moved to a new residence?
Residence as in a new address: 6 times

7. Do you hold dual citizenship? If not, are you eligible to?
No and No.

8. How many languages do you speak?
Uhm ... Swedish, English, cursory German, and I can understand Danish and Norwegian.

9. Do you consider yourself as belonging to a particular culture?
I don't think of myself as Swedish. The past years of neo-nazism (especially in Southern Sweden) has left a bad taste in the mouth to be a proud Swede.
I guess I don't consider myself anything other than .. European maybe.

10. Is your spouse/significant other from the same culture as you?
Yes he is. He grew up 7 miles from where I grew up.

Re: I don't know why I'm even taking this poll...

But I want to know! I think it's equally fascinating that some people DON'T move or travel. Bizarre, but fascinating :P

Really strange that you don't consider yourself Swedish. We have KKK and neo-nazis in the US too, but they have no bearing whatsoever on how I view my own culture.

(Anonymous)

Delurking to play along…

1. World culture, no. My parents grew up in (different) small towns in MN, I grew up in a suburb of MPLS.
2. Yes, I was born right here in MN.
3. No, I have always lived here.
4. No, I went to school in St. Paul.
5. No, I have always lived here.
6. I moved out in college (to St. Paul) and then moved back to my home town, and then after I was married, we bought my childhood home (!) and then moved to another suburb of MPLS three years ago.
7. No, and I don’t think so.
8. I speak English, and I took French in HS, but haven’t spoken it since. I regret that.
9. I am a tried and true Midwesterner…I just can’t help it!
10. Yes. We are high school sweethearts. We have been together 23 years, but married for 16 years.

I am about as opposite of you as I can get with regards to your culture quiz!

I hope you are enjoying your time alone :) I have been reading for a while and love to read about your life. Thanks for sharing!

~Megsie

That was equally fascinating! I'm glad you de-lurked :) Don't you have a blog to give me a link to?

And how lovely about being HS sweethearts and together for 23 (!) years. Wow! that's awesome!

1. Are your parents from the same culture? If not, where are they from?
yes, both american.
2. Were you born in the country your parents (or a parent) came from? If not, where?
yes
3. Did you spend time as a child (under 18) living in a different culture than your birth culture? How long? Where?
no
4. Did you go to school abroad or outside or your state/country?
i studied in florida (home), washington state and kentucky
5. Have you lived abroad as an adult (over 18)? If you lived abroad as a child, have you ever lived in the country of your birth?
sweden for 7+ years now
6. How many times have you moved to a new residence?
i have lost count, but i would estimate about 18-20
7. Do you hold dual citizenship? If not, are you eligible to?
yes, american and swedish
8. How many languages do you speak?
english and poor swedish (i understand much more than i feel comfortable speaking)
9. Do you consider yourself as belonging to a particular culture?
i consider myself belonging less and less to any specific culture having become some sort of blend...
10. Is your spouse/significant other from the same culture as you?
he is swedish

"Blend" perfectly describes it. We're such individual little melting pots, aren't we? :)

Not me, but my college had many, many TCKs. They had their own student group. I remember one girl whose parents were American and Australian, and she had gone to high school in Pakistan.

My husband is Canadian, as is his family, but grew up in Indonesia. His dad was a petroleum engineer so he would move every few years to various oil-producing countries. He thinks of himself as Canadian, though. From what he's told me I don't think there was a lot of interaction between the locals and the oil camp folks so he didn't absorb much of the culture.

Me, I'm just American. I like to travel though!

Being a military brat was kind of like that too: all the schools and housing and everything is like a little enclave. You have to make a real effort to get out and mingle with the locals if you're living abroad.

oops. Should have checked spelling BEFORE I hit "post"

1. Are your parents from the same culture? If not, where are they from?
Both Americans, raised poor... which is a culture all it's own.
Mom, predominately Scottish/Irish. Dad, predominately Native American/Irish.

2. Were you born in the country your parents (or a parent) came from? If not, where?
Native Oregonian

3. Did you spend time as a child (under 18) living in a different culture than your birth culture? How long? Where?
Nope.

4. Did you go to school abroad or outside or your state/country?
Nope.

5. Have you lived abroad as an adult (over 18)? If you lived abroad as a child, have you ever lived in the country of your birth?
Nope. (Does Alaska count? It felt like another country!)

6. How many times have you moved to a new residence?
OMG, you expect me to count and remember that!?
2 that I remember as a child. but it was actually 4.
As an adult...about 20.

7. Do you hold dual citizenship? If not, are you eligible to?
Nope.

8. How many languages do you speak?
Just English, although I study a couple others (one seriously, one whimsically, and in my dreams about four others.)

9. Do you consider yourself as belonging to a particular culture?
yeah, the "weird" culture, a conglomeration of this and that

10. Is your spouse/significant other from the same culture as you?
NA

Re: oops. Should have checked spelling BEFORE I hit "post"

Hey! I'm a member of the weird culture, too! :D

1. Both my parents are Swedish, born and raised in the same province only some ~10 miles apart.
2. Thus I am also born in Sweden.
3. I've never lived abroad, only gone on vacation.
4. Alas I've never studied abroad although I spent one week with a Russian family in Moscow.
5. No, see above.
6. I have only moved once, when I left my parental (?) home. Well, twice if it counts to evacuate your apartment due to a water leak. Did I mention I live only a few hundred meters away from my parents? :-)
7. I am a Swedish citizen. Nothing more, nothing less.
8. I speak Swedish, English.. used to understand some Russian.
9. While I'm not much for traditions and such, I belong to the Swedish culture and think it is great we at last got a National day to celebrate. To those who get an ugly taste about nationalism, racism and other -isms, we need to embrace our nationality and let everybody take part of it. Otherwise we're giving away the rights to being e.g. "Swedish" to the dark forces. In times of neo-nazis playing on their own people's superiority, it is even more important to hold onto the country is for everyone as long as all are willing to take and give (i.e. not purposely isolate themselves within a foreign culture).
10. Answer is not yet available. I'll get back to that whenever I've got a partner of any kind.

1. Are your parents from the same culture?

Yes, both were born in the USA and Jewish, so cultural references were similar.
2. Were you born in the country your parents (or a parent) came from? Yes.
3. Did you spend time as a child (under 18) living in a different culture than your birth culture? No.
4. Did you go to school abroad or outside or your state/country? Yes, I did my Junior Year of college abroad.
5. Have you lived abroad as an adult (over 18)? Yes, I moved to France at age 20.
6. How many times have you moved to a new residence? For years I would alternate four years in France with four years in the USA, but I've settled now in France (since 2001).
7. Do you hold dual citizenship? Yes.
8. How many languages do you speak? Two.
9. Do you consider yourself as belonging to a particular culture? Always one foot in one and the other in the alter country.
10. Is your spouse/significant other from the same culture as you? No. But he is funny like me. :)

4 years in each country! Moving jobs and all, too? That sounds like a good plan for an expat. I have friends who are trying to figure out how to spend 1/3 of the year in Sweden, 1/3 in Australia, and 1/3 in the States. It's the job part that is holding them back.


1. Are your parents from the same culture? If not, where are they from? My step-father for 20 years is from Austria. I grew up with him.
2. Were you born in the country your parents (or a parent) came from? If not, where? Yes, except for him. In Australia.
3. Did you spend time as a child (under 18) living in a different culture than your birth culture? How long? Where? Yes, we had a quarter of every year in Austria for 12 years and one full year there. My brother and I kept going back every year of our own accord afterwards....
4. Did you go to school abroad or outside or your state/country? Yes, for one year.
5. Have you lived abroad as an adult (over 18)? If you lived abroad as a child, have you ever lived in the country of your birth? Yes, in France and the UK.
6. How many times have you moved to a new residence? Way too many to remember.
7. Do you hold dual citizenship? If not, are you eligible to? No, sadly *sob*
8. How many languages do you speak? 2.5
9. Do you consider yourself as belonging to a particular culture? I feel torn. I'm VERY Australian but feel homesick for Europe. I connect with Austria and Europe.
10. Is your spouse/significant other from the same culture as you? N/A

It's funny, I don't think of you as being of Austria at all, even though you've talked about it in the past. You seem so quintessentially Australian to me, but somehow at the same time so very global! :)

(Anonymous)

Ok, my answers to these questions will be so boring. But I am sick and bored, so why not. It fits. LOL!

1. Are your parents from the same culture? If not, where are they from?

Yes, they are both Swedish, from Stockholm

2. Were you born in the country your parents (or a parent) came from? If not, where?

Yes

3. Did you spend time as a child (under 18) living in a different culture than your birth culture? How long? Where?

No

4. Did you go to school abroad or outside or your state/country?

No

5. Have you lived abroad as an adult (over 18)? If you lived abroad as a child, have you ever lived in the country of your birth?

No

6. How many times have you moved to a new residence?

Eh... as an adult. None. When I was living at home we moved three times. Twice within the same area. I STILL live in that area. At number 26, we used to live at number 24...

7. Do you hold dual citizenship? If not, are you eligible to?

No and no

8. How many languages do you speak?

Two. Swedish fluently and English well(Or so I thought until I started my current job...)

9. Do you consider yourself as belonging to a particular culture?

Yes, Swedish.

10. Is your spouse/significant other from the same culture as you?

I'll tell you when I find him.

/Mia

http://mias.blogg.se

If you speak English anywhere near as well as you write it, you're totally fluent! :)

(Anonymous)

1. Are your parents from the same culture? If not, where are they from? My parents were born/raised in America. I now live in Germany. Moved over here when I was 32.
2. Were you born in the country your parents (or a parent) came from? If not, where? Yes, I was born in America...but as you know our ancestors were from Germany
3. Did you spend time as a child (under 18) living in a different culture than your birth culture? How long? Where? Nope. Grew up in Nashville, Tn. and lived there till my mid- 20s
4. Did you go to school abroad or outside or your state/country? Not till I was in my 20s
5. Have you lived abroad as an adult (over 18)? If you lived abroad as a child, have you ever lived in the country of your birth? I live aborad now. Moved to Germany in 2001
6. How many times have you moved to a new residence? More than I count but many of those moves were within the same city when I was in my twenties and single. I lived in Boston for a short while, New Hampshire and the Washington DC area.
7. Do you hold dual citizenship? If not, are you eligible to? No, American only. I think I cn only hold one citizenship, otherwise I'd definitely apply to have German as well.
8. How many languages do you speak? Two on a good day
9. Do you consider yourself as belonging to a particular culture? I feel like a mix of Americanism and German
10. Is your spouse/significant other from the same culture as you? No, He's 100% German.

XO,
Cousin Kat

Kat, It's not the US that doesn't allow dual citizenship...they do (or rather, they don't care if you are dual elsewhere as long as you don't formally renounce your US citizenship, and you have to use your US passport to enter & leave the country). ...It would be Germany's laws that matter for you.

(Anonymous)

1. Are your parents from the same culture?
Yes.

2. Were you born in the country your parents came from?
Yes.

3. Did you spend time as a child living in a different culture?
No.

4. Did you go to school abroad?
No.

5. Have you lived abroad as an adult?
Yes, Sweden for 3 years and Australia for 5.

6. How many times have you moved to a new residence?
19.

7. Do you hold dual citizenship?
Yes, USA and Australia.

8. How many languages do you speak?
English fluently, Swedish and Spanish semi-fluently, and I've studied Russian and Japanese.

9. Do you consider yourself as belonging to a particular culture?
Yes, American.

10. Is your spouse/significant other from the same culture as you?
Yes, American.

-Russell

I've considered studying Russian, it seems such an interesting language. All I know how to say is "yes" and "no"

(Anonymous)
ROOTS & WINGS POLL

1. Are your parents from the same culture? If not, where are they from?
No. My mother is American. My father is Portuguese (from the island of Terceira in the Azores). His family migrated to the U.S. when he was four years old but they lived in an area consisting of primarily Azorean immigrants so he was raised with a healthy dose of both cultures.

2. Were you born in the country your parents (or a parent) came from? If not, where?
Yes, I was born in the U.S.

3. Did you spend time as a child (under 18) living in a different culture than your birth culture? How long? Where?
Yes. I, too, am an Air Force brat. In addition to several states in the U.S. we also lived in Germany, the Azores and Panama.

4. Did you go to school abroad or outside or your state/country?
Yes. Elementary school and high school in the countries listed above. But they were American schools.

5. Have you lived abroad as an adult (over 18)?
Yes. Sweden for 3 years. Australia for 5 years.

If you lived abroad as a child, have you ever lived in the country of your birth?
Yes.

6. How many times have you moved to a new residence?
Too many to count.

7. Do you hold dual citizenship? If not, are you eligible to?
Yes. I have dual American/Australian citizenship.

8. How many languages do you speak?
Fluent in English. Somewhat conversational in Swedish. Took many years of Spanish in high school and college but never really applied it. asway luentfay inay iglatinpay asay aay ildchay. LOL

9. Do you consider yourself as belonging to a particular culture?
Yes. American.

10. Is your spouse/significant other from the same culture as you?
Yes.

Cheers,
Kathey

Re: ROOTS & WINGS POLL

HAHAHA! I should have added Ubbi-Dubbi to the list of languages I speak! :D

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