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Old 02-16-2009, 06:49 AM
3 posts, read 5,525 times
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My name is Adriana and I was born and raised in New York. I have lived in Rome, Munich, Frankfurt, and currently live in Barcelona. My husband and I are planning to move to Seattle this summer. I am in my early thirties and I have a lot of experience in administrative support. My last job before I left the States was an Executive Assistant for a Professor and Chair of a department at Columbia University (4 years). I have also worked as an Office Sales Manager and Admin. Asst at American Express Publishing. My husband is from Cameroon (we met in Spain), he is in his late twenties and he is called an aluminium carpenter here in Spain, basically he builds and installs windows, doors, etc. We would like to know what the job market is like? housing costs? Is Seattle as costly as New York? (one reason I do not want to return to NYC) Also, I prefer my husband to see another side of American life then the hustle and bustle of New York (love NYC but I think it would be overwhelming for my husband). Any suggestions folks?
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Old 02-16-2009, 11:21 AM
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Seattle is not as costly as NYC, but it's more expensive than many other places in the US. It's a slower pace than New York. The economy has slowed, and is continuing to slow, but it's still considered stronger than many other places in the country. One thing that will likely shock you coming from Spain will be the lack of sunshine. Not so much the rain, because the total annual rainfall isn't all that much, but there are weeks on end sometimes where the sun doesn't come out at all. For a lot of the year, Seattle is cool and gray. That fits some people perfectly, and others find it depressing.
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Old 02-16-2009, 11:29 AM
Location: Cosmic Consciousness
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Hi. I'm from Manhattan, and was an expat for 11 years and understand some of your thoughts.

Seattle is expensive, but not nearly as expensive as NYC, Westchester County, etc. It's also very relaxed (in a wonderful way New Yorkers can't imagine) about race, politics, religion, superficial things like clothes, and so on. Very gentle and live-and-let-live, and comparatively quite safe.

If you are not aware of the climate here, you'll want to read the Washington forum threads and the Seattle forum threads about weather. Our maritime climate is pretty mild and gentle all year, with drizzle and cloudiness that covers the entire sky most days from Oct. through mid-June. Y'gotta love greenness!

You are aware, aren't you, of the current extremely serious recession in the U.S.? The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has announced that 3.2 million people lost their jobs in 2008. That reality is rippling throughout all industries, and larger companies are announcing job cuts each day while small companies are announcing they're closing their doors. Nov. and Dec., respectively, saw a half-million people and 598,000 people lose their jobs, and it is expected that for some months or a year this monthly tally will not improve. The Seattle area has fared better than many areas in the country, but things are slowing here.
Employment Situation Summary

That having been said, here are a few resources for a very wide area including and around Seattle.
NWSource for job listings:
Seattle area jobs, employment advice and information | NWjobs
NWSource for rentals:
NWapartments: Seattle apartment rentals, house rental listings, rental classifieds and other property rentals in Seattle, Tacoma, Bellevue and other Washington areas, cities and neighborhoods
Craigslist for rentals:
craigslist: seattle-tacoma classifieds for jobs, apartments, personals, for sale, services, community, and events
There are also rent.com, forrent.com, apartments.com

I wish you a happy adventure!
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Old 02-16-2009, 11:59 AM
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Just curious, why would you move from Barcelona? Isn't it one of the very best cities in the world? Seattleites think they know coffee, but I've had coffee at gas stations in Spain that is better than most anything found here. Food is superior in Spain, it's friendlier there, etc. etc. So why would you leave that place?
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Old 02-16-2009, 01:15 PM
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Thank you for the great advice! I researched the climate of Seattle and although I think I will find the weather a tad bit depressing, but I NEED diversity and it is true that there are parts of California that offers that, it way too expensive and I cannot deal with the superficialness of SoCal.
Heiwos...Barcelona is a wonderful city but when you are hit with a global crisis and people are losing their jobs in by the thousands, who do you think feels it first? IMMIGRANTS! Also, all cities give a wonderful impression when you live there, but trust me, its a different ballgame when you live there. Spain is wonderful, but if you want friendliness and warmth go to Andulasia, if you want all night fun go to Madrid, if you want great scenery...come to Barcelona. I will miss the food, but I miss Italy for that reason, not Spain. Also, I would like to have children and I am not sure if I want to have and raise children overseas.
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Old 02-16-2009, 02:24 PM
957 posts, read 1,042,125 times
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Ah so, that makes sense. When I think of great Spain food, I'm thinking of the non-Spanish food there, like Italian and Cuban (no french fries for dinner!). I like how the orange juice is usually fresh squeezed. And the pastries...
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