You Know You’re a Third-Culture Kid When…

(This exists in various versions on various sites; this one was sent to me by a friend.)

You can’t answer the question: “Where are you from?”

You speak two (or more) languages but can’t spell in any of them.

You flew before you could walk.

You have a passport, but no driver’s license.

You watch National Geographic specials and recognize someone. (ALONG THE SAME LINES: YOU RUN INTO SOMEONE YOU KNOW AT EVERY AIRPORT)

You have a time zone map next to your telephone.

Your life story uses the phrase “Then we went to…” five times (or six, or seven times…).

You speak with authority on the quality of airline travel.

National Geographic (OR THE TRAVEL CHANNEL) makes you homesick.

You read the international section before the comics.

You live at school, work in the tropics, and go home for vacation.

You don’t know where home is.

You sort your friends by continent.

Someone brings up the name of a team, and you get the sport wrong.

You know there is no such thing as an international language.

Your second major is in a foreign language you already speak.

You realize it really is a small world, after all.

You feel that multiple passports would be appropriate.

You watch a movie set in a foreign country, and you know what the nationals are really saying into the camera.

Rain on a tile patio – or a corrugated metal roof – is one of the most wonderful sounds in the world.

You haggle with the checkout clerk for a lower price.

Your wardrobe can only handle two seasons: wet and dry.

Your high school memories include those days that school was cancelled due to tear gas, riots, demonstrations, or bomb threats.

You go to Taco Bell and have to put five packets of hot sauce on your taco.

You have a name in at least two different languages, and it’s not the same one.

You think VISA is a document stamped in your passport, and not a plastic card you carry in your wallet.

You automatically take off your shoes as soon as you get home.

Your dorm room/apartment/living room looks a little like a museum with all the “exotic” things you have around.

You won’t eat Uncle Ben’s rice because it doesn’t stick together.

Half of your phone calls are unintelligible to those around you.

You go to Pizza Hut or Wendy’s and you wonder why there’s no chili sauce.

You know the geography of the rest of the world, but you don’t know the geography of your own country.

You have best friends in 5 different countries.

You’re spoilt. You know it. You’re VERY spoilt.

5 thoughts on “You Know You’re a Third-Culture Kid When…

  1. Evelyn Simpson

    Great article. I just tweeted a link and will be listing it as a resource on my next blog post this afternoon. I’m not a TCK as I lived in the same country until I was 22 but having made 7 international moves since then, I relate to many of the comments and I’m sure my TCK children will relate to more. I’ll be following your blog in future. Evelyn

  2. Pingback: Where do you come from? « The Smart Expat

  3. Monique

    HAHA! This made me laugh so badly! I relate to pretty much all the things you said! Hilarious 🙂
    God I miss the places ive lived!!
    Thanks for this, made my week =]

  4. Pem

    Almost all of those describe me…I’m 13 now, and have lived in five different countries (including my ‘home country’), not having lived in my ‘home country’ since I was four years old. I still live abroad now, to be honest. Although I don’t speak that many languages (most people speak at least a little English), I can do bits and pieces. But I totally relate to pretty much all of those things. Some even came as a surprise to me, like the fact they DON’T have chilli sauce in those places. Whyever not?

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