BUCKZA . COM Personal Website of Riaan Venter aka BuckZA
Chemistry.com

My move from South Africa to the USA

Lots of people has asked me the same question, "What brought you to the USA?"

As a child, I always said I want to live in the USA. I had never set foot on American ground till the day I moved here. I only saw where Florida was located on the map 3 days before I left South Africa. Wow! "That's a big move," everyone said, and yes it was.

Unless you have lived in South Africa and experienced the current political situation there with all the crime, corruption, murder, car jackings, etc., you might not understand why I've made a move as big as this.

Unfortunately, the rest of the world does not get the truth of what is happening there.

I just woke up one morning and decided that I had enough of this. Walking around 24/7 with a loaded gun and always watching your back is not a life. I had to get out of South Africa! I had no idea where to - just knew I had to get out.

With my background of years in computers, I knew that I would find a job easily. In March 1998, I started looking for jobs on the internet and sending out my resume around the world. Two months later, I was made an offer by an American company who sponsored my visa. Then I had to wait for my visa to be approved. By the middle of September 1998, they called and told me that my visa was approved.

My house in South Afica

I basically packed up in 6 weeks, sold all appliances, put my furniture in storage with friends, rented my house out, sold my car and left. At that point, I was still working 50 hours a week on site for my last client. Thank God for good friends that came around and helped me pack.

After 12 months in the USA, I went back to sell my furniture, unpack the boxes in storage and sell the goods and bring back a few personal items with me. What a shock! I could not believe that things went backwards so fast. One of the neighborhoods where I lived in my early 20s went from a clean, safe and up-market neighborhood to one that was filled with crime and filth. I realized that the South Africa I grew up in has moved from a 1st world country to 3rd world one now. It is sad, but that is the reality......

Moving from this size house into a 1 bedroom 650 square feet apartment was a challenge. I knew it was only temporary, till I got on my feet. I bought a house in Orlando in May, 2002. Adapting to Orlando was much easier than I thought. I had to get used to a lot warmer summers and nicer winters than I was used to in South Africa. This is the BEST move that I ever could have made, and I'm every day grateful for the opportunity that was given to me.