Per from Manila, Philippines - Live Work Travel USA|Live Work Travel USA

Per from Manila, Philippines

feat_PerI’ve had the opportunity to not only work with Per on the Expat Cuisine eBook, but also got to ask her a bunch of questions about her journey through immigration. Read on for her insights.

How long have you been living in the U.S. and what do you do?

I’ve been here since July 2013, and I’ve currently applied for legal residency/green card.

Why did you decide to move to America and how did you pick your destination?

I moved here so I can join my husband who’s currently based in Arizona. I guess you can say I moved here for luuuurve. Love.

What was the most difficult part of your immigration?

The hardest part would be being away from each other during the whole process. It took us almost a year.

What do you enjoy most about living in America?

I love the people (some), the delicious turkey and pies (I just recently had my first Thanksgiving),  and it’s definitely easier to drive here, well, at least in Phoenix. I love the hiking trails too!

What techniques worked best for you to learn English?

Most Filipinos have English as their 2nd language because it’s pretty much part our school curriculum starting from Preschool. I remember how they would impose English only policy in school, which of course being the obedient student that I am, I only follow when the teacher’s around.
I like to read and watch movies so that helps a lot in developing my vocabulary.

Is there anything that you miss from home other than family?

I totally miss the food, and how you can easily get away from getting a ticket – just kidding.

The Philippines were recently hit by a devastating typhoon and I hope your friends and family are alright. How are the Filipinos recovering from this disaster and are other countries doing enough to help?

Thankfully, my friends and family are fine. My mother’s hometown, Roxas City, got hit though not as bad as Tacloban. The donations were overflowing! I can’t thank the international community enough for all their help.

What are the biggest differences between every day life in the Philippines and America?

I don’t really notice much difference except America gets snow and they have Walmart (and the people in Walmart) here.

Have you found a good source to buy Filipino food in America?

Yes! There are Asian grocery stores not too far from where we live. In Phoenix, it’s LeeLee’s and Asiana.

You’re running your own blog “Perky Thoughts” with tips and stories about daily life in America. Tell us a little bit about it.

It’s an old blog that I’ve just revived upon coming here in the US. I thought why not bore the hell out of people by sharing the mundane details of my new life here? Seriously though, I have lots of informative stuff (DIY/travel tips/recipes/expat life) I plan on putting on there so please do check it out!

What were the most shocking or surprising experiences you’ve had since you’re here?

One notable experience would be at Walmart when I saw a guy shopping with his butt crack exposed in all its glory. (see Walmart Wednesday)
I don’t really consider it surprising or shocking but seeing people consider a piece of sandwich as lunch just boggles the mind of someone who grew up having rice in almost every meal.

Please share your best advice for Living, Working and Traveling in the US. Anything in particular for other Filipinos?

I’ve only been here for 5 months but I do know a lot of Filipinos who’ve migrated and started a new life here. I’d say work hard and never lose hope. Also, explore! The US is such a big country filled with nice people (except the racists and psycho shooters), and beautiful landscapes and sceneries. Oh yeah, try the pies too. They’re delicious!

Visit Per’s blog at to read more about her and her experiences in Phoenix, Arizona.

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