Judging by Belinda’s Facebook posts, there’s a never-ending stream of guests taking advantage of her posting in a place a bit more foreign. Visitors flit in and out of her photos as often as the sheets she’s constantly washing. It’s one tourist attraction after another, Belinda and a parade of guests in tow like ducklings. Sometimes, if you look hard enough, you can see a forced smile on her face as she lugs her tired ass up the steps to the Eiffel Tower yet again.
Annie’s social media presence is defined by layover lounges and aviation avatars. Artistically rendered plane wings over orange sunsets, cropped photos of weathered carry-ons and beat-up passports, gate connections and destination boards. Work travel, leisure travel. Annie’s taking advantage of her posting to rack up as many air-miles as she is Instagram and Twitter followers.
Imogen’s expat life is glossed, flossed, branded, and embossed. Her hashtag worthy photos are filled with delicately dusted lattes and local farmer’s markets brimming with greens. It’s an X-pro filtered life of the best and brightest of wherever she’s posted: smiling locals, sepia streets, quaint village life. The only problem? Immy’s carefully curated view never gets past the sugary foam on top to what often lurks beneath.
Veronica on Vacation
If Ronnie’s social media account is anything to go by, she’s on permanent vacation. Family frolics in France and apres Aquavit in the alps. You know she or her spouse must work–don’t they?–but the steady stream of holiday snaps makes does make you wonder. It can be hard to tell if Veronica’s merely taking advantage of a posting in an airline hub capital city, or if she’s masking something darker by getting out of whatever place she’s landed as often as possible.
On the surface life appears to be one non-stop party for Marty. Sequins, glitter, and large rooms full of people blaming it on the boogie are par for the photo album course. In between the lines of the Proseco photos and silly snaps though? The fact that many of those parties are goodbye dos or holiday meals spent far from family. Still, by the looks of it, Marty’s life seems to be champagne at dusk til mimosas at dawn with nary a day off in between. It’s just a question of when that dancing heel’s going to snap from wear and tear.
Local Lover Liam
Liam’s feed is chock-a-block with all things local and indigenous. No matter what lines of longitude and latitude he’s landed, he seeks out local fare to document and share. From shaved calf shin in Tashkent to dubious delicacies in Dubrovnik, Liam’s leaving behind a breadcrumb trail for future anthropologists to follow. Cherry-blossom festivals and Carnival, changings of the guard and military parades, Liam’s a one-man tourism board for wherever he’s living.
Holly’s Facebook feed always starts off with phrases like we’re so blessed or #foreverthankful, usually above photos of ski resorts during February break or white sandy beaches in December. It’s hard to tell if Holly knows just how many people she’s pissing off at ‘home’ or if she just doesn’t care.
Vera continually hints at things without committing, prompting hundreds of “Are you moving?” replies from the folks she knows. Maybe she’s moving–or maybe she really is asking for a friend. It’s a possibility the contract’s signed, or perhaps she really is just looking for info. There are plenty of times you have no clue where Vera actually is until her location settings suddenly change and her timeline has one of those Moved to Timbuktu notifications..with a retroactive date.
Betsy takes the opportunity to blog about her expat lifestyle. Cultural faux pax? Don’t worry, it’s blog fodder. Conversations, observations, things that make you go hmmm, all of it’s fair game. Watch out though, there’ll usually come a time you recognize yourself in her pages, tucked among the recommendations and the pleas for family to bring breakfast cereal her kids will eat. Or maybe canned black beans. You never know, one day you might find yourself in a book …