Pink Italy: Expat Ladies Living in Italy
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Still Searching

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1 Still Searching on 16th March 2010, 2:03 pm

Hi all,
I moved to Venice a year ago this past Dec. I was a Branch Operations Officer for STAR Financial Bank for over 10 years and I was also on the board of driectors for a Homeless Shelter for American Veterans called Stepping Stones. I had my own home, a great life, great friends and thought my life was going pretty well. That all changed when I met my now husband in a chat room. ( if you had told me I would fall in love with someone from a chat room I would have told you that you NUTS!) But happen it did. After talking with him for over a year and having visited him in Venice and him visiting me in Indiana 2 times I made the hard decision. I left everything and moved here to be with him. I tried to prepare myself the best I could and seeing as I knew no Italian decided to get my TESOL certificate. (Teach English as a Second Language).
Having that in hand I really thought it would be fun and exciting to start my new life here. Well, a year later I am still looking for work. I did get offered a position teaching English at a nursery school called HOPLA but have recently heard some bad things about it and the position dosent start until June. I met with the director in January and she said she would like for me to work there and would send mea proposal but I have not heard anything from here since. ( I know the Italians sometimes take thier time getting things done so I have not lost all hope yet) I have also advertised for teaching conversational English as well as Grammer. I get inquiries but no takers yet. I dont know if it's because I'm living in Venice ( where most people don't care about learning English) or if I'm doing something wrong or what! I have taken 2 intensive language courses and my Italian is getting better but I still have a long way to go. I would love to start a business of my own or with a partner. doing what??? No Idea... But i'm open for suggestions. It seems like everytime I want to try something here somone tells me it's too difficult to do that but I just KNOW theres a way!! I just dont know what direction to take. Any help would be appreaciated.

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2 Re: Still Searching on 16th March 2010, 6:22 pm

hello there! I live in Florence so I know the challanges of finding work in another county, its tough but not impossible. Remember its just going to take TIME. Alot of people come and go from the major cities of Italy so italians are quite wary of people they think may leave.

I would try and advertise your self for private classes. some companies may need an english teacher to teach their employees so start emailing businesses. Starting your own business is very difficult here ( lots of red tape ) but I have seen some success stories here in Florence which gives me hope. You kind of have to make your own job(s) in italy, where even italians can't find decent work ( the government refuses to acknowledge that there is any problem with the economy/ the way the contracts are/ ect ect ) so there ya go . Shocked i posted something on my working situation here .. so maybe that will help!

try also wedding organizers that may need help, apartment rental agencies who need a mother english person, may be easier!

buona fortuna! btw how do you like living in venice?

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3 Re: Still Searching on 17th March 2010, 10:31 am

Its beautiful and difficult lol.... I really miss little things like CLOTHES DRYERS!! lol... but for the most part I like it. Its been getting alot better now that I have made some friends of my own.

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4 Re: Still Searching on 17th March 2010, 11:09 am

It takes a while to adjust to living in italy you dont realise how different its going to be when you first move here!

I moved here to be with my BF and i didnt know any italian when i first came to live here and for the first 2 months i wouldn't leave the flat unless he was with me as i was so worried knowone would understand me!

Missing friends was the hardest part and it took me 7 months to find my first real friend here. I found an expats meetup group but all the wanted to do was go out and get drunk 3 times a week and i couldnt afford to do that! Plus thats not my kind of thing now im older and you just couldnt make friends that way!

After a while you will feel more settled even though things always come up! like no clothes dryers! loool

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5 Re: Still Searching on 18th March 2010, 2:23 am

Its so funny because I hear the same story over and over about how long it took people to go out by themselves and its true!!! lol...I know I didnt go out alone for at least 3 or 4 months! Its seems so silly now I dontknow what I was so afraid of. I have also been told that some of them didnt try to speak italian for a long time too so they just didnt talk in public... Im alot like that ... I hate the way I sound when I talk italian but I'm getting to the point where I really dont care if I make mistakes anymore. Im a very talkative person and its killing me to keep my mouth shut for so long!! lol.. So... I might sound like a child when I talk... who cares.. as long as I can get my point across I guess thats what is important. Oh and BTW.. I got my first student today!!! They are comming tomorrow for thier first English lesson YAY!!!!

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6 Re: Still Searching on 18th March 2010, 11:09 am

Yay for your first student!!! Very Happy

I babysit some young italian girls and help them with there english and i love it! i cant imagine not doing it:)

My italian is bad to im just lazy then i was worried about making mistakes or not remembering the words! but i have found i acutally understand more now if i hear a conversations its just i cant reply back the way i want to as my italian sucks lol

Like you i can be a very chatty person and i hated the fact i couldnt be myself here, i used to email my friends in London long emails all the time lol or go on webcam to talk to my sister for an hour!

Good luck with your first student! you will do wonderfully cheers

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7 Re: Still Searching on 18th March 2010, 3:12 pm

Tami wrote:Its so funny because I hear the same story over and over about how long it took people to go out by themselves and its true!!! lol...I know I didnt go out alone for at least 3 or 4 months! Its seems so silly now I dontknow what I was so afraid of. I have also been told that some of them didnt try to speak italian for a long time too so they just didnt talk in public... Im alot like that ... I hate the way I sound when I talk italian but I'm getting to the point where I really dont care if I make mistakes anymore. Im a very talkative person and its killing me to keep my mouth shut for so long!! lol.. So... I might sound like a child when I talk... who cares.. as long as I can get my point across I guess thats what is important. Oh and BTW.. I got my first student today!!! They are comming tomorrow for thier first English lesson YAY!!!!

well done!
I know what u mean about hating sounding like a child when u speak. I have some issues with my son's teachers, and I am so frustrated that I can't express myself eloquently. I feel it would change her attitude towards me. Instead I keep all my angst to myself and cry in rage! On the other hand my friendly neighbours are used to me and have a lot of patience when we chat, so I have made some 'true' friends. Still I love it when I meet up with other expats, it's just so much easier and I don't feel like I have to explain or justify everything I think/feel with 'maybe it is becasue I am English....' !

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8 Re: Still Searching on 18th March 2010, 3:46 pm

Lizzie wrote:well done!
I know what u mean about hating sounding like a child when u speak. I have some issues with my son's teachers, and I am so frustrated that I can't express myself eloquently. I feel it would change her attitude towards me. Instead I keep all my angst to myself and cry in rage! On the other hand my friendly neighbours are used to me and have a lot of patience when we chat, so I have made some 'true' friends. Still I love it when I meet up with other expats, it's just so much easier and I don't feel like I have to explain or justify everything I think/feel with 'maybe it is becasue I am English....' !

Snap! this is how I feel too! How old is your son Lizzie? Just to let you know.... those issues carry on ad infinitum here with teachers .... some of them seem to think they are a superior race or something!! Evil or Very Mad Most of my problems stem from the facts that a) my italian is STILL rubbish b) people then think I am stupid or ignorant or snobby and c) I really, really hate being treated like I am stupid/ ignorant/ snobby. I actually had a complete crisis with my older son's teachers and finally took an English friend (I only have about two anyway!!) to a meeting at the school with me as she speaks brilliant Italian and has dealt with teachers here in her time too and it turns out that they felt that I was supporting my son in his bad behaviour. She made them make me an appointment with the school psychologist who has turned into a tremendous ally.... literally ALL my problems with the school stemmed from poor communication and differing cultural expectations and many things have been ironed out now that they understand where I'm coming from. I'm still trugging along learning this flipping language but it does feel like a slooooooow process sometimes!

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9 Re: Still Searching on 18th March 2010, 6:11 pm

arrrrrrrrrrrrrrrh, this is why you sound familiar...I am sure I followed that thread on expats, or was it one similar? You were pretty desperate about the situation, but didn't it turn out that your son was hiding his homework and being generally unco-operative at school, but that you hadn't realised this?... I may even have replied ,I can't remember. Matteo is nearly 9, he is in Terza. I am lucky, coz the teacher is quite sensible really, but she is Italian..therefore we are coming from completely different directions!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Also Matteo started Italian school at 4 so he is more in tune with Italians than I am!!!! But the whole system is a nightmare....don't get me started!!!! Mad

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10 Re: Still Searching on 18th March 2010, 11:59 pm

Well, had my first student today and it went really well. She was very nice and even asked if she could come twice a week! Im really excited and hope this takes off! Very Happy

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11 Re: Still Searching on 19th March 2010, 12:27 am

Lizzie wrote:arrrrrrrrrrrrrrrh, this is why you sound familiar...I am sure I followed that thread on expats, or was it one similar? You were pretty desperate about the situation, but didn't it turn out that your son was hiding his homework and being generally unco-operative at school, but that you hadn't realised this?... I may even have replied ,I can't remember. Matteo is nearly 9, he is in Terza. I am lucky, coz the teacher is quite sensible really, but she is Italian..therefore we are coming from completely different directions!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Also Matteo started Italian school at 4 so he is more in tune with Italians than I am!!!! But the whole system is a nightmare....don't get me started!!!! Mad

Hmmm yes that would be me.... Embarassed Embarassed In our defence we did pull him out of UK school when he was 8 and plop him here in full Italian school without a word of Italian... he's doing much better recently!! Wink ... we might need our own thread to fully explore these 'issues!!! Twisted Evil

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12 Re: Still Searching on 19th March 2010, 12:28 am

Tami wrote:Well, had my first student today and it went really well. She was very nice and even asked if she could come twice a week! Im really excited and hope this takes off! Very Happy

That's fab! I wish you the best of luck with it. I have intermittent students mostly but I do enjoy teaching!xxx

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13 Re: Still Searching on 19th March 2010, 12:36 am

Way to go Tami!!! cheers

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14 Re: Still Searching on 19th March 2010, 10:05 am

indiebird wrote:
Lizzie wrote:arrrrrrrrrrrrrrrh, this is why you sound familiar...I am sure I followed that thread on expats, or was it one similar? You were pretty desperate about the situation, but didn't it turn out that your son was hiding his homework and being generally unco-operative at school, but that you hadn't realised this?... I may even have replied ,I can't remember. Matteo is nearly 9, he is in Terza. I am lucky, coz the teacher is quite sensible really, but she is Italian..therefore we are coming from completely different directions!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Also Matteo started Italian school at 4 so he is more in tune with Italians than I am!!!! But the whole system is a nightmare....don't get me started!!!! Mad

Hmmm yes that would be me.... Embarassed Embarassed In our defence we did pull him out of UK school when he was 8 and plop him here in full Italian school without a word of Italian... he's doing much better recently!! Wink ... we might need our own thread to fully explore these 'issues!!! Twisted Evil

I've setup a new thread in raising kids..... xxxx

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