Lucia Lobont, Romania

Born in Romania Lucia Lobont moved to the Netherlands in 1996 to build a fulfilling professional career.

Eindhoven is… my lovely hometown in the Netherlands.

 

What was the most difficult part about moving to the Netherlands?
It took me some time to get used to making upfront appointments even with family and friends. Also I remember I hated to ride the bike!

 

What is your best piece of advice for other expats who have just recently moved here?
Try to integrate by learning the language and making Dutch friends.  

 

What is the best advice that someone gave to you about living here?
The same advice I give to other expats: learn Dutch as quickly as possible and try to make Dutch friends. Learning the language really did help me a lot.

 

What was your first impression of Eindhoven?
I loved it! It’s a modern city that offers everything you need to make life enjoyable.

 

Did you experience culture shock?
Not really. The differences are not shocking but even now after 17 years there are things that surprise me and I have to adapt to. Some of the differences: the appointment and bicycle culture, the directness of the Dutch people and the difference in the perception of hospitality and the role of food. What do I mean by that? In Romania if you’re invited for coffee/tea you’ll get the whole cake on the table to eat how much you please. During the dinner you’ll get a heap of schnitzels in front of you not only one piece on your plate.

 

Do you speak any Dutch?
Yes, it’s one of the first things I attempt to learn after arriving. I followed a half year full time course at TilburgUniversity. After that I’ve passed the NT2 exam.

 

Do you ride a bike?
Yes, I do. I am able to bike even with my son, but not with an adult at the back. I think you must be really Dutch to be able to do the later.

 

What do you miss most from home?
I miss my family and a couple of friends who are still in Romania. Also I miss some pastries I used to like while living there.

 

What do you like the most about the Dutch culture?
I like the fact that everything here is so well organized.

 

What is your favorite Dutch tradition?
Eating “oliebollen” on New Year’s Eve!

 

How do you celebrate Queen’s Day?
We sometimes walk to the city center and enjoy the activities. We avoid the huge crowds though.

 

If you had to leave the Southeast Netherlands tomorrow, what would you miss most?
Here is my home now … so, I’d miss my home, friends, everything.

 

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