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Posts by roade85  

Joined: 8 Nov 2015 / Male ♂
Last Post: 20 Dec 2015
Threads: 4
Posts: 21
From: Nuremberg, Germany
Speaks Polish?: No

Displayed posts: 25
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roade85   
20 Dec 2015
Work / Some questions about average wages and hiring a cleaning woman/maid in Poland [23]

(terri) I just looked back and you actually advised me to ask the employee to tell me how much I should pay! You gotta be kidding me- good luck with THAT if you ever have a business. Who knows, maybe it would actually work like those grade your own paper experiments, but I'm not going to be the guinea pig
roade85   
20 Dec 2015
Work / Some questions about average wages and hiring a cleaning woman/maid in Poland [23]

How am I set on it? I just asked what the actual range was and so far no one has really answered the question. Said pay what I can afford, and good luck finding anyone under 15zl, when there are obviously millions of people making less. Maybe they're students or immigrants, but that might be who I want to hire for some tasks, at first at least. Probably not, but possibly.

As for the 2 quid an hour thing, believe it or not there are probably in the low millions of people in the US who make under 3 quid/hr. That's what a lot of farm workers make. Agricultural workers have a special minimum wage and a lot of them get paid in the 4-5 USD range, sometimes in cash. In the countries where those people come from (Honduras, Nicaragua, El Salvador) they often make less than $0.50/hr. The regular minimum wage across the states ranges between 4.25 quid and 5.75 quid.

I'd be happy to get into a discussion about the workings and justice of the world economy sometime, it's my kind of topic, but that's not why I posted this thread.

cms: Thanks for the info and about the premium for Wroclaw.

I see what you're saying that that's the average wage for all jobs, but some of the jobs I'm talking about are at the low end of the skill spectrum. In the US the average salary for all professions is somewhere around 45k/yr, but there are millions of people making 12-18k in low paid, low skilled jobs. Someone who makes 120k gross is not considered rich esp in West coast and northeast, but rather upper-middle class, even though it's 10x some people's incomes. A doctor can make anywhere from 60-250k++. It's all over the map and I'm trying to zero in on different areas of the skill spectrum.
roade85   
20 Dec 2015
News / Demonstrations in Poland in defence of democracy. [2554]

I'm not pro-PiS, don't know enough about them, but the anti-PiS people at the higher levels are the very forces who did Gladio and all the other CIA shenanigans.
roade85   
20 Dec 2015
Work / Some questions about average wages and hiring a cleaning woman/maid in Poland [23]

It's important to know the range because then you can hold out for the better people. Why can't people just tell me what it is? You can't just wave money around and the best people all know about you and flock to you. That's not how it works. A lot of it's luck and a process of trial and error. There are good people who will work for less early on in their careers, and later make more. When you hire someone and you see they are good, then you can pay them more to keep them around. On the other hand you can pay high off the bat and still get stuck with a scumbag.

My best workers who are very capable people started out at low-end wages, now they make triple their initial wage as independent operators who I still work with. And that's in the US, where the starting wage wasn't terrible.
roade85   
20 Dec 2015
Life / Comparing Poland and Romania [108]

Thanks for the replies. In Poland currently, and leaning strongly towards staying. It's just something I've been mulling over the last month.

I speak fluent Spanish, so Romanian would be far easier for me to learn quickly. However, if it's a permanent relocation, an extra year of language learning is not that big in the scheme of things. And I'm not a native Romance speaker, so I don't have a huge advantage towards eventual mastery than with a Slavic language (English has some Latin influences, but more just with the vocabulary, so really just a matter of memorization).

Thought English level was better overall in Poland, although, like in Poland, there is a small but significant percentage in Romania who speak extremely good English.

Didn't notice any oil wells. Must be a southern thing (spent more time in north/central), or maybe a thing of the past?

Public transport isn't a big issue for me since I usually drive if I can't walk. Although the suits in bars thing is not really my style.

I'm planning a start-up company that's mostly just me with some long-term, freelance IT help needed. I have a good connection for that in Romania, but can almost certainly achieve about the same outcome in Poland on my own. Taxes and wages are slightly lower in Romania, and IT talent may be a little higher, which is a business plus, but it's not a huge difference in any of those respects. I'm comparing the two countries because I have the legal ability to live in both, and am basing this as much or more on living considerations than business considerations.

I don't mind the stray dog thing. More stray animals tends to equate to a more wild, freer, and laid-back environment. I usually carry something I could kill/fight them off with, know how to avoid them, and not really a likely target anyway since animals tend to attack kids, small/weak adults, or elderly anyway.

To be honest, in many respects, the 'far behind' thing is a plus. I think most Americans were better off when they weren't as wealthy. It's a never-ending trap of running on a hamster wheel and keeping up with the Joneses, and lately turning a blind eye to everything and anything we do to the rest of the world if it means protecting one's wealth and comfortable life. Then you have many people in America won't have or severely delay having kids because they say they don't have enough money. It's all BS. People 50 or 75 years ago had kids with far less money, they just did it and made work, and the kids turned out far better than most kids today. People today are too cautious, too selfish. Much of Western culture is rotting, and there are far poorer nations out there that are much richer in non-monetary ways. I'm sure it sounds hypocritical coming from a 'Westerner' who has enjoyed the higher material wealth, but I believe it's true.
roade85   
20 Dec 2015
News / Should Poland exit the EU immediately? [375]

They should assert sovereignty at every opportunity, in an attempt to reduce the EU to nothing more than a defense alliance and customs-free zone. That's all the EU will ever be good for. No common currency (just a banker scheme to fleece the governments and people at every deflationary downturn) or regulations, no unelected Brussels bureaucrats, no garbage trade treaties like the TTIP.

Get out of NATO and have a new European defense alliance, so Europe can stop getting roped into American/British wars and dirty tricks. Russia doesn't want war, they just want to stop getting harassed and isolated by NATO (i.e. US/UK/France)
roade85   
20 Dec 2015
Work / Some questions about average wages and hiring a cleaning woman/maid in Poland [23]

If that is true than how come people refer to the average as being about 2500 zloty, when according to you rock bottom, only 5% of population, is making 2200? I am not opposed to paying 15+, I'm just trying to figure out what the current climate for wages is. I've seen references to as low as 6 in many posts, for things like busboy, hotel maid, etc. Although that may have been from a couple years ago, and in cheaper cities
roade85   
20 Dec 2015
Life / Why Do You Love Poland? [890]

One thing I love about Poland is that, as a wider society, it has easily the best taste in American/British (mainly talking about American) music in mainland Europe. All types, from jazz to country, 60s, 90s and beyond. This is based on people I've met, musing playing at bars and coffee shops, music on the radio. I say that having been to every country in Europe. Italy is a close second. Czech Republic is decent, Finland is decent (about half the society), Portugal may be decent, everywhere else pretty much sucks in comparison. Germany, while it has huge subcultures of good music lovers, is the worst.

Poland and Italy's might even be better than Ireland.

One thing: PLEASE PLEASE stop playing Last Christmas by Wham! EVERYWHERE....it's half decent, but you don't have to play it every third Christmas song.
roade85   
20 Dec 2015
News / Demonstrations in Poland in defence of democracy. [2554]

Back to this dual citizenship petition. Would this apply to one's original citizenship by birth, or only through additional citizenships gotten through naturalization?

Excluding dual citizens from any high-level elected or bureaucratic positions, including any central bank positions = very smart

Excluding dual citizens from living in the country as Polish citizens, or at least as truly permanent residents = completely idiotic

(the US for example bans foreigners, or at least people who admit to being foreigners, from the presidency, but it should go further and include all leadership positions at the federal level, and of course that can't apply to the central bank since ours is privately owned)
roade85   
17 Dec 2015
Life / Comparing Poland and Romania [108]

I used to think that, but then saw that they come from Dacians, who seem like a Slavic group who later adopted a Latin language for practicality or whatever other reason. Then there are also some Turkic and Hungarian ethnic influences there. Same language thing happened with Celtic groups in France, Spain, and other parts of Western Europe.
roade85   
17 Dec 2015
Work / Some questions about average wages and hiring a cleaning woman/maid in Poland [23]

It doesn't take much to top my cooking skills. I would show how to do something if they weren't able. Nothing fancy, just very basic meals, like a boiled or roasted potato, boiled vegetables or kupusta, and (usually just pan-fried) meat or fish, for example.

Sorry, but as a businessman, and to me this hiring would be a business decision, I can't get with the idea of paying as much as I can afford. I also sympathize with the very low wage situation in Poland and wouldn't pay rock bottom even if I could get away with it. So if someone could be hired for 10zl and I could afford 15zl, I'd probably pay 12.50, for example. As an entrepreneur it's important to pay well to get good people, but if you pay a little less than top-end you can hire more people who are not the best but good enough. I am sure that Poland's currency will eventually rise to near or above the Euro and that's the way wages and living standards will increase here, even if the PLN numerical amount does not actually increase much.

Basically wondering what the average, or better yet, typical range for these jobs is in a bigger city like Wroclaw. I've seen a lot references to jobs in the 8-12zl range, but is that strictly outside big cities, if so, how far?
roade85   
17 Dec 2015
Life / Comparing Poland and Romania [108]

Not that they apparently have anything in common other than being mostly Slavic, former Warsaw Pact nations, but am wondering if anyone here has significant knowledge of Romania, first hand or otherwise, and the differences between it and Poland. I am strongly considering moving to Poland, but a potential business opportunity in Romania has opened up (near Timisoara).

The people and their attitudes to anything and everything, the government, future national prospects? Any other topics

I've been there before, and think it's a beautiful country, especially in the north and middle. Like the food, and the people seem friendly enough. Not that I have much against them personally and I actually appreciate some of their values, but when I say the people I'm talking about non-Romani Romanians, since from my experience there the gypsies are in large part living in a separate society from the rest. The government struck me as a little more corrupt and 'backward' than Poland, but that could just be my imagination. And the people, in my extremely limited experience there, to be not quite as friendly or easy for me to relate to, meaning having as much cultural common ground and shared cultural/pop-cultural knowledge, as Polish people.

I know this topic could span volumes, but just a brief thought. Basically, if you were in a bar and had to make a comment or two about any differences between the countries, what would they be?
roade85   
17 Dec 2015
USA, Canada / Thoughts on moving to Poland from USA [62]

Hey, I don't call it Stettin. I speak a little German and have a little German blood, aber ich bin kein Deutscher. Instead I try and probably fail to pronounce it in Polish. Although I have some experience with Germans across the border, who stare quizzically when you say it in Polish, then say 'oohhh, you mean Stettin'
roade85   
17 Dec 2015
News / Demonstrations in Poland in defence of democracy. [2554]

I'm not too educated on the differences between the parties and am not a usual supporter of any party in America or Poland, I'd just like to point out that in the US for example, the 'mandate' usually comes from only 25-30% of the voting population, since turnout is right around 50%, and that includes all the dead people, illegal immigrants, and people who voted 5-10x because they don't have to show ID, not to mention the fact that it's mostly done on hackable electronic machines now. Not sure there's a huge difference between that and 18%. Any party that is against Eurozone entry and described as anti-bankster is not off to a terrible start in my book.

That said, I reject the notion that people who don't vote 'deserve' any government. In the US, we have a choice between Thug Party A and Thug Party B. Not exactly a democracy, and protesting the charade by sitting it out may ultimately be the best course of action.
roade85   
8 Dec 2015
USA, Canada / Thoughts on moving to Poland from USA [62]

No throwing at me expected; I don't expect that anywhere. Don't need hordes either. I've met many people in Poland who speak English on a level that seemed good enough for a friendship or relationship. I know it's not all that common, but definitely not incredibly rare. Just trying to get an idea of the best place/places for it. Apparently you think that's Warsaw. Do you really think it's head-and-shoulders above the others in that regard? I liked Warsaw; liked Krakow and Wroclaw better, but didn't dislike Warsaw. I lived in NYC (where you live?) for 5 years and have been in pretty much every big city in Europe, so I am no stranger to the big city bar/nightlife scene and don't have some kind of fantastic expectations. As a comparison, if someone else asked this question about say, Ukraine or Bulgaria, my answer would be no, you have a low chance of meeting someone (not that there aren't plenty of people in both who speak English, but they are rarer in terms of how many and how good than in Poland in my experience, just trying to figure out how much rarer.)
roade85   
7 Dec 2015
Work / Some questions about average wages and hiring a cleaning woman/maid in Poland [23]

What would be the typical wage for someone with very basic English knowledge who would work somewhat independently in a light manufacturing setting (no prior skills or experience needed; like gluing/screwing a simple item together for example, boxing it, putting labels on, mailing packages, etc)? In Wroclaw, in or just outside the city.

How about for a lower skilled secretary, who does things like basic data entry and answering phones? Also for a basic/no English speaker vs a fluent English speaker? A no-accent native English speaker who lives in Poland? Just rough figures. And comparison with other cities/areas if you have the time.

This may strike people as a weird question, but is it easy/possible to find a cleaning woman who would also help with things like dishes, and even washing/folding clothes and cooking/preparing meals (not serving it to me or anything, but maybe making a big pot of food/bunch of individual meals when I am there or not and putting them in tupperwares in the fridge). Sort of like a nanny job description but with no kids. Would requesting this come off as weird? What would be the typical going rate and employment arrangement for this kind of worker, assuming it was only part-time like 20 hrs a week? It seems like the difference in rent between what I am paying now and what I would pay in Poland would cover the cost of it and then some.

I'm good at working and running my business, but I'm not good at also staying on top of housework and cooking all my own meals, and don't like to eat out all the time for money health and time reasons. I would be better off financially and otherwise hiring someone and spending that time on my business. Not married yet and don't really want roommates. I don't want this to sound like I'm extravagant or want servants or something. In the US I hired a cleaning woman who did my apartment every 2 weeks, and it's not uncommon there for middle-/upper-middle-income people.
roade85   
7 Dec 2015
USA, Canada / Thoughts on moving to Poland from USA [62]

Very true about US legal system. Supreme court justices have immense power and legislate from the bench all the time. They are just lawyers and on their way up the ranks act the politician just as much as legislators. Then they get their black robes and basically become gods that literally can do anything they want with no (official legal) consequences or recourse by the people or rest of the government. Due to the general welfare and interstate commerce clauses the US constitution has been established to have no meaning whatsoever beyond what they want it to mean.

I still can't accept that Polish courts literally make up amounts that must be paid out of thin air (unless it is some minimum amount for subsistence/reasonable living standard of the woman and children) with no evidence at all, and then there's no hearing, no recourse, and they put out arrest warrants if you can't pay? Can someone give me a specific example of how this would happen, money figures involved, etc? Like I said, hopefully this won't ever be me. From what I've seen though, I don't think the situation is any better in the US (also very, very slanted in favor of women) or any other country I might consider living in, so I'm not going to worry too much about it. Still good to know though.

Dolnoslask: that's really cheap for a house and land. I saw some similar deals online. I had only looked at real estate close to cities (like in real estate agency windows, etc) and had no idea the price went down that much in the country. Do you have a go-to website/source to look for real estate? Also, I was trying to figure out around where you live based on the distance. That sounds like a pretty convenient location. It seemed like you might be in the vicinity of Boleslawiec? What is the rough percentage you would guess of people who speak German, and what areas/town/cities have the most? Do any young people still speak German? I haven't really come across it any big cities in Poland, though I did a little in Ostrava which I believe is Czech Silesia or right outside. Do you or anyone you know hav an issue with the difference between the Silesian and Polish languages?
roade85   
7 Dec 2015
Life / Moving to Poland and not drinking vodka [26]

Thanks for the replies. A lot of interesting info here. Plum brandy sounds good but maybe for me better with just a meal.

Not panicking, not 'not my own man.' I'm my own man, but when you're with a group and you meet for a coffee or a cigar or whatever, it's usually expected that all will be partaking in the activity on roughly the same level. Maybe I hang with the wrong crowds, but there are people who I consider to be good people who are worth being friends with, including people in my family, who also are sometimes relatively heavy drinkers. So to me that's not a deal breaker, but I'd like to work around it a little if possible. About the real man stuff, I've never had that questioned so it's not a worry.

It was and is only a minor concern and wasn't even close to a make-or-break thing, but couldn't really think of any other way to put it. As I said, it would actually be a bit of an issue to move to Germany and not drink beer, or move to Italy or France and not drink wine. But it doesn't seem to be quite as pervasive in Poland, or if it is there is usually an acceptable alternative available at the times I would be looking for one.

It stemmed from nothing I'd seen, but from a story I heard about Polish house parties from a British girl who was living there (I've never been to one and have only been out late at bars 6-7 times), where a lot of eating goes on, but shots are also taken with the food basically in rounds, and it's something pretty much everyone joins in on, and that people don't get that drunk because of the food (where I maybe would anyway). And these are people I consider to be normal. I'll cross that bridge if/when I come to it, but doesn't seem like it will be any kind of a major issue regardless.
roade85   
26 Nov 2015
USA, Canada / Thoughts on moving to Poland from USA [62]

So what are you saying, judges just make up arbitrary amounts people must pay, with no facts/documentation to back it up? 'Well, even though your personal income is $5/mo, you must pay $10?' I'm not experienced or knowledgeable in this matter, but I always thought alimony was based on the income of the person, which is why unemployed ghetto guys in the US often pay like $20/month in alimony/child support.
roade85   
26 Nov 2015
USA, Canada / Thoughts on moving to Poland from USA [62]

Thanks for the thoughtful replies.

Majkel: The reason I'm leaning towards big cities is I've found English is more widespread there, or at least used more, and it tends to be easier to meet new people. I really don't love or even like big cities though, for me it's better for a weekend trip a few times a year. I grew up in a smaller town and also like the country. I just feel better when living/spending time there than a city. Can you give me examples of the towns and cities near the forest you referred to? Also unfamiliar with term 'bi city'

Nothanks/majkel: I will check out Poznan again next time I am nearby. I was there once before but only briefly passed through. I like the fact that Wroclaw is close to the mountains and as I could see myself eventually living in that area or having a second home/vacationing there. Have no problem hanging with expats/exchange students, I just don't want to be limited to that. Good to know about the large number of Spanish students.

Dolnoslask: As far as the hen party thing, been there done that. That being said, being surrounded by groups of women doesn't usually tend to hurt your chances with others in the vicinity and can certainly help pass the time. I am very into the idea of having a home/second home in the country. I will check out the website.

Unfortunately I have a very practical car that is about the least sexy possible. Was great for long road trips though. I'm more of a point A-B guy, but I could probably use a small upgrade; not quite ready to spend that kind of cash on a vehicle yet though. Having a small farm/big garden property also sounds interesting and is something I've always wanted to do eventually. I like to hook up with farmers for good-quality meat and produce now and would like to just grow my own someday. Will check out the website.

Delphiandomine: Some income and assets are in non-Polish company I am a shareholder of, rather than being personal salary. Not that I would ever abandon children financially anyway, and hopefully I won't date let alone marry anyone like that. But it's good to know.
roade85   
26 Nov 2015
Life / Moving to Poland and not drinking vodka [26]

The father-in-law thing is not really that big of a worry for me, I probably shouldn't have focused on that. Yes, maybe I'd get stupidly drunk, more than him, but getting drunk casually hanging with people I know and trust has never been an issue, as far as doing anything I'd say I genuinely regret. Honestly, 100% of the bad nights were when I have been single, looking for girls, and out at night at a bar or party, usually a bar/club.
roade85   
26 Nov 2015
Life / Moving to Poland and not drinking vodka [26]

This is a serious question. I recently made a long post about potentially moving to Poland in the near future. I am American and currently live in Germany. One small reservation I have is that I do not regularly drink vodka and usually avoid hard liquor in general (esp whiskey). I appreciate vodka and like it, but I've had problems- just very bad nights I really can't afford to repeat anymore- resulting from hard alcohol and I made a decision in the last couple years to normally stick to beer and wine.

I'll still have some hard liquor in a controlled, comfortable environment, like a family gathering (of my own family). Going out in Poland though, the Vodka shots sometimes are constantly circulating, and it's hard to avoid. I wouldn't want to offend people by turning this down, but honestly, I just can't handle Vodka like Polish people can, even girls tbh. In general, Europeans just handle their alcohol much better than Americans.

My worry is that this would be akin to living in Germany and not drinking beer, or living in Italy and not drinking wine. Obviously there are countless people in Poland who don't drink at all, or only drink beer, etc, but I'm a little worried about it being such a widespread thing that it becomes a significant social problem, or problem with future girlfriend's family, etc. Or do you think it would just be a minor annoyance/obstacle?
roade85   
8 Nov 2015
USA, Canada / Thoughts on moving to Poland from USA [62]

I am a 30 y/o male, born in America, American citizen, white (mainly Italian-Irish-French, a little English & German, no Polish), Catholic, and also have citizenship in an EU country.

For the past 1.5 years I traveled throughout Europe while working remotely, all countries including all areas and major cities of Poland. Before that traveled in US for one year. Lived in Krakow for about 3 weeks but everywhere else was a brief stay. In total I've probably spent 7 or 8 weeks in Poland. For the last two months I have been living in Germany (northern Bavaria) but increasingly think Poland may be a better choice.

For reasons I don't care to get into here, I don't plan on living in America or Canada for the medium/long-term future, though I do want to be able to easily visit my family 2-3 times a year.

The top priorities for me in terms of cities are:

1) moderate to low pollution by Polish standards,

2) a good nightlife scene with a lot of English-speaking women under/around age 30 and the highest possible percentage of English speakers in general

3) somewhat sunny weather by Polish standards and changes in season and

4) open, friendly people who are relatively accepting of outsiders. For me it's pretty much down to Wroclaw and Krakow. I like Wroclaw because it's a little closer geographically to Western Europe and the pollution issue doesn't seem to be as bad (it's a non-issue there for me in most neighborhoods) so it's pretty much my top pick as of now. Any other cities I should be considering (they don't have to be esp big)?

I make about 95k USD after taxes (360.000 zloty) from a business I own in the US that I manage from abroad. I'm pretty good with languages and speak fluent Spanish, decent German, and some Italian, so I'm confident I can learn some basic Polish quickly, though I know it is one of the world's hardest. Have bachelor's degree from very good American university.

The main question: given my circumstances, do you think it would be possible to 'fit in' in Poland short-term without knowing much Polish (I only know very basic phrases now, just enough to get around), and long-term assuming having pretty good Polish? Chance of meeting a Polish woman and group of friends (not just expats) who speak pretty good to good English (enough where full communication is usually possible, having normal conversations with my family, etc)? Any considerations I'm overlooking?

To give you an idea of where I'm coming from, here are some things I like about Poland:



- In summary: people, food, ideas of comfort/decoration, nature esp in south and east, relatively cheap prices, normal/traditional gender roles, less PC, lower business taxes, balanced climate in south w 4 seasons

- The Polish people: I find most to be humble, polite, friendly, approachable, and I like the sense of humor. In general, I just find the men relatively easy to respect and be around, 'men's men' in short, and I find the women especially attractive and usually get good vibes in return; not that that ultimately matters much, since I only plan on being with one. Obviously this is a massive generalization and there are many exceptions in all the foregoing regards.

- The food (favorite in Europe)

- Ideas of what traditionally constitutes comfort (i.e. the way older-style houses in countryside, inns, and restaurants are built and decorated, and just their general ambience, not that that reflects how many people in apartments live all that much, but still a plus for me)

-It's a big country that's not landlocked, with nice mountains and forests. I also hunt and there seem to be a lot of opportunities for that esp in the south and east.

-Cheap prices by my standards. I would like to buy a single-family house somewhat soon without taking on a huge mortgage. I also want to have 3-4 or more kids and have the (reasonably affordable) option to send them to a private school, although I'm guessing some of the things I'd be avoiding in US or UK schools aren't as much of an issue in Poland.

-Traditional/normal approach to gender roles. If I have kids I don't want my wife to work any more than part-time and maybe not at all, since I think raising kids and keeping up a household can already be a full-time job and doing both is too much.

-Taxes are relatively low (for corporations at least, important for me since I own a company and am considering starting another small company, potentially in Poland)

-Less political correctness than other countries

- 4 seasons and warm summers

-I think the religiousness is a plus and has/will help people keep their humanity in an increasingly high-tech and morally relativist world

-Not yet invaded by Arab and African hordes, and I haven't seen a significant wigger/fake gangster/Turkish 'wigger' segment

-A good balance between 'Eastern' and 'Western' European (and yes, I do consider it to be Central Europe like Czech, Hungary, etc), and more accessible for most Americans than countries further east

-For me, the self-bashing and complaining I've heard about is more normal than a downside. I find the opposite of that, like in some parts of Germany (mainly Bavaria), to be a little creepy for some reason.

Things I don't like about Poland:



-Pollution in the cities (I come from a small town and am pretty sensitive to it. Thought it was bad in Krakow esp certain days).

-English is pretty bad, though not so compared to other big countries in Europe, except Germany

-Somewhat of a blind allegiance to and trust in the US and its foreign policy and IMO exaggerated concern about Russia, and IME most people have a dated image of what the US really is, which makes it hard to explain why I choose to be in Europe/Poland and not the US

-Traffic, often worse than where I'm from in the US

-Sometimes there's less common ground in terms of familiarity with American movies, music, and culture/pop culture compared with people in Western Europe, so there's just less to talk about in that regard. Only with some people though and with many there's no real difference.

-Limited business opportunities for me compared to Western Europe, for what I do now at least, which is run a semi-luxury service business that depends on upper/middle-class disposable income, so I would need to rely on my US-based business for foreseeable future.

So why Poland of all places?



Asia: too far, don't think I'd particularly like the culture, food, or the women (in far east) in most areas (haven't been there except Turkey).

Africa: only white guy in town.

Latin America: places I've been seem too different culturally and ethnically.

Australia & New Zealand: too far and would never see my family, no long-term visa guarantee.

Spain, Italy, and Greece: too Mediterranean culturally, don't love food on everyday basis.

France & Belgium: don't like people all that much (smug).

Scandinavia: boring, cold, midnight sun issues, expensive, and people too practical.

UK / Ireland: bad weather and food, not crazy about people (often bitter and envious) or politics. Ireland: rains all the time, no 4 seasons, people a little timid for me.

Austria & Germany: too practical and pragmatic, many arrogant, self-satisfied, know-it-alls; too PC, too feminist, hard to make friends.

Netherlands: Germany-lite, bad weather, boring landscapes, people too tall. Switzerland: too expensive, may not get residence permit. Czech Rep, Russia, & to lesser extent

Slovakia: can't deal with the grumpy and somewhat standoffish people. Former Yugoslavia, Albania, and Baltic countries: too small and isolated.

Bulgaria/Ukraine/Romania: too different culturally. I like a lot about all the aforementioned countries, but if I have to say why I wouldn't actually live there, those are the reasons.

The only countries I have seriously considered are Italy (south & central), Ireland, Finland (mainly bc of the people), Germany (parts), Poland, and maybe Netherlands bc of the English there.