Out and about is the column where we chat to people who live or have lived and worked abroad. This week we are talking to Dirk Scheepers, currently living in America.
Where do you live and why exactly there?
I live in New York and would really like to move further south, to Texas, for better weather and no federal state tax. But alas, I work in finance and need to live close to Wall Street.
In what line of work are you?
I work as an institutional broker and trade corporate stocks of companies such as Amazon and Apple.
Do you still speak Afrikaans?
My entire family is still in South Africa, but I speak/listen/read Afrikaans on a daily basis, especially on my podcast, the DS Program. More links are available at the end of this article.
What do you like most about your life there?
I like the shortage of electric fences, very few smash and grab, the relative low murder rate and the fact that the colour of my skin usually counts less than my ability and the content of my character. Of course the cheap fuel and high average income are also not bad.
Was it easy to make new friends and engage with the community?
It was very easy to engage, especially because it wasn’t a problem for me to improve my English and to treat the people around me with respect. Americans welcomed me with open arms and I’m certain that if I needed their help, they would assist me.
What was the strangest to come to terms with?
The strangest to come to terms with is surely the beef jerky, so as a result I have started hanging my own biltong and am slowly starting to teach the Yanks how much better biltong is.
How does a typical day in your life look?
My day starts quite early, at 5:30, and we trade throughout the day, 7:00 to 17:00, usually followed by dinner with a client. Then the weekend comes around and I relax next to a braai or on a road trip.
Do you still have contact with South Africa and will you return one day?
I keep contact with family in South Africa and if all goes well in the next couple of years, my dream of a never-ending summer can possibly materialise: six months in South Africa and six months in the USA.
Dirk Scheepers en gaste bepeins die nuus, politiek en kultuur. Meestal polities inkorrek, sonder sensuur, met hier en daar ’n kras woord. Ons fokus ook op “Sake wat Afrikaners raak”.
(EN) Culture and politics, among other things, are discussed on this program, often with choice language, listener discretion advised.