Swiss Expat Story: Christine in New Jersey, USA

par MySwissWorld & Swiss Food Box Team

Helvetic post 17

We welcome you to our newest interview in our weekly series. Here we interview each week somebody from the community and learn a bit more about their lives. This week, from Union, USA:  🇺🇸
Christine Berni is a homemaker and mother currently living in Union, New Jersey. She was born and raised in Davos, Switzerland until 2010 when she moved to New York City to study for an Associate Degree in Digital Media Arts. Christine misses the food and infrastructure of Switzerland, but enjoys the diversity of her current home in New Jersey. While Christine plans to return to Switzerland for vacations, she does not see herself returning permanently. On the pictures above you can see one of Christine's daughters and her from their visit to Davos in March 2022, the front of their house decorated for 1. August, and some Swiss goats (Gämsfarbige Gebirgsziege or Chamois-Colored Mountain Goat, I believe) they discovered during a visit to Fosterfields Living Historical Farm in New Jersey.
What is your name and where are you living now?
Christine Berni, living in Union, New Jersey/USA. I'm a homemaker and mother.
What is your connection to Switzerland? Have you been born there, or do you have some roots in Switzerland? 
I was born and lived in Davos until 2010. (I like to say I was delivered to the wrong place at birth because I am not an outdoors person!) Then I moved to New York City to study for an Associate Degree in Digital Media Arts. While there, I met someone and we started dating. We've been married for 10 years as of May 2022, and we are raising our almost 10 year old daughter together in a lovely little house in Union, New Jersey.
What is the thing that you miss about Switzerland the most?
Apart from my family and friends, definitely the food! (Particularly meat products etc. which can't be shipped to the US by Swiss Food Box due to import bans). Also the quality of Swiss infrastructure, public transport, and how much more walkable Swiss towns are! Another thing I miss is the diversity in political parties, which leads to a more balanced and nuanced political discussion than we have here in the US.
What do you think is better or do you like more in your new country?
I don't have to worry about 6 months of cold and snow, at least not here in New Jersey. 😉 I love that my daughter is growing up in a racially and culturally diverse area, which would never be possible to this extent in Switzerland. We were also lucky enough to find a lovely little house we were able to afford before prices started climbing ridiculously high again. I doubt we'd have been able to do that in Switzerland.
Do you have any plans of returning soon? For vacations or permanently.
For vacations of course, as often as possible, which is sadly not every year. I doubt I'd return permanently, unless something horrible happens like the US descending into civil war.


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