Deniz Akman, Istanbul, Turkey
Istanbul native Deniz Akman talks about sitting next to the Cooke Monster on the bus to work!
Function: Office Manager
Eindhoven is... 2 degrees of separation from Philips, 3 degrees of separation from all international community.
Why did you move to the Southeast Netherlands?
I am a wife of an engineer - this is a pretty exhausted route for Universiteit Twente graduates.
How long have you lived in the Southeast Netherlands?
Since December 2006
What is your job title/ function?
I am an Office Manager; I utilize my personal knowledge of relocation at my work too.
What is your best piece of advice for other expats?
Do not expect a ‘quick fix' or a ‘short cut'. These virtually do not exist in Dutch service environment.
What is the best advice that someone gave to you about living here?
Don't worry! Everything happens in 6- 8 weeks' time. In the meanwhile you realize that you can actually live without ‘that' thing you waited for. I find it a very refreshing approach to our current over commercialized values.
What was your first impression of the Southeast Netherlands?
I lived in the north of the country, in Enschede about 3 years before moving to Eindhoven. My first impression was about the dialect: Soft G makes the language really easier to understand! I love it.
Did you experience culture shock?
Compared to Enschede, people are much open and they seem Iike they enjoy the world. I quite like the Burgundian approach.
How have you adjusted to living in the Netherlands?
Quite a lot: Recently sent a detailed to do list to a friend of mine for an event we are planning in December, apologizing I am late with planning. Preparing for a casual event 5 months in advance is not at all common in the Mediterranean culture.
What do you miss most from home?
Good, effective and fast banking, fast and effective customer service, shops that actually has some clothes for smaller women, not having to wait 35 minutes to pay the check in a restaurant ...
What do you like the most about the Dutch culture?
The clear and almost ‘holy' distinction between work and private life is something I love in this culture. As expats, some of us come from faster paced work environments where work is above and beyond everything. I now realize Dutch approach is much more sustainable.
If you had to leave the Southeast Netherlands tomorrow, what would you miss?
Nothing beats sitting next to a Cookie Monster in the bus, on my way to office on a Carnaval morning. Even though I don't participate, it is great to watch.
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