Home » Moving Overseas: Why I Cried in a Restaurant

Moving Overseas: Why I Cried in a Restaurant

Moving Overseas: Why I Cried in a Restaurant

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I know, this isn’t a food blog. It’s a travel blog. It’s an adventure blog.

So why would I be writing about crying after eating some bad food?

Well, it all has to do with moving out of home for the first time AND moving overseas at the same time.

I’m not going to lie. Moving overseas not all rainbows and butterflies. It’s exciting; yes. But also at times it’s hard.

It’s been exhilarating, exciting and stressful all at the same time.

I’ve had fun picking out furniture for the first time in my apartment, exploring new places to eat, and figuring out which supermarkets I like to do my weekly grocery shop at (Trader Joes FTW!)

What all the blogs don’t tell you is how it can be hard and at times lonely to move halfway across the world to a city where you don’t know anyone. I think travel and moving countries is glamorised, which makes it all that much harder when people move.

Whoever implied that moving was exactly like travelling lied

Whoever implied that moving was exactly like going on vacation, lied

I was feeling homesick for some home cooked food. At home in Australia, my parents own a Malaysian restaurant, so for me, I associate good Malaysian food with home. My mum makes a mean Laksa, and I was craving a good Malaysian meal.

We had some friends suggest a local Malaysian restaurant (the best in Boston… Also turns out the only in Boston), and I was so excited to try it out.

Fast forward to the restaurant, and I’m sitting there, eating my Roti and Fried Char Kway Teow (fried noodles).

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It is not what I expect.

The roti is dry, flat. The curry isn’t even spicy.

The fried noodles don’t have that special “wok” flavour. They’re also made with the wrong type of noodles.

In that exact moment, I don’t know what came over me.

I start crying.

In the middle of the restaurant.

I missed home so much; I wanted to be able to build the same life that I had at home, here in Boston too.

I guess I had been in denial about moving.

I had assumed that everything I had loved about my home, I would be able to build here. Because the parts of home that I had loved, had made me, well me.

New traditions; like taking a photo of the sunset every night from our apartment

New traditions; like taking a photo of the sunset every night from our apartment

In hindsight, what I didn’t realise is that Boston and Melbourne are two completely different cities.

We shouldn’t move to build the same home in a different city.

We should move because we want to build a brand new home.

Find new things that we love about our new home. And then when it’s time to go back or move elsewhere, that’s what makes that home, home.

So for me now, I won’t be looking for a good Malaysian restaurant (regardless of the fact that there aren’t any). I’ll be looking to make my own new traditions, or find new things that I love about this new home.

Like Clover; the place across the street that sells the best healthy sandwiches. Or my new favourite café for breakfast, Tatte. Or cooking my own Laksa at home to satisfy that craving.

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Because new homes need their own traditions; and moving countries is about building new things that you love.




  1. Steph
    November 25, 2016 / 3:18 pm

    So true! We’re looking to move back to Melb next year and there are things I’m going to miss so much about our lives in Tel Aviv!

    • Mae-Gene
      December 20, 2016 / 3:20 pm

      I can’t believe you’re moving back to Melbourne already, time really has flown! Hope you and Kevin have been well, lots of love x

  2. November 25, 2016 / 3:21 pm

    Thanks for sharing MG – very raw and real, and oh so relatable. I’ve had many such moments myself. It does get easier, my tears are definitely much less frequent, 10 months on since making the move. Loving your blogs, and keep up the amazing work!

    • Mae-Gene
      December 20, 2016 / 3:19 pm

      Thanks for the comment Bas, I’m glad you found it relateable! I’m also so glad to hear that time makes moments like these less frequent!! Hope you’ve been well, I love seeing all your adventures in Europe x

  3. Cassie
    February 7, 2017 / 12:24 am

    Nooooo maybe we should open an eatery! I’m moving to Boston in August (for a similar reason to you, spouse is completing his JD at HLS) from Wellington, New Zealand, and was literally wondering the other day where I would get my char kway teow and roti. My parents moved to NZ from Singapore so I’ve always grown up with access to Malaysian food – this is some disappointing news!

    • Mae-Gene
      February 7, 2017 / 10:46 am

      Omg no way!! I’m the same, I’ve always grown up with good Malaysian food (my parents have a Malaysian restaurant in Melbourne). There are a couple of options in Boston, but definitely no where near the quality I was used to (to think I spent years under-appreciating what I had!) Hit me up if you have questions before you move here, would love to help in any way I can! x

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