Hello, and welcome to my blog. I thought I would start by introducing myself. My name is Dan Van Werkhoven, I’m a writer and a composer living in Saipan, a Northern Mariana Island. I moved here a couple of months ago to marry the love of my life.

Hailing from the Land Down Under, I migrated to this beautiful little island and am currently reestablishing my life. One of the few things I wanted to do with my not inconsiderable free time (visa restrictions mean I can’t work for a while) was to make a return to writing. I’ve been writing just over nine years now. Life became very busy during that time, and I was forced to move writing to the back burner. However, I am pleased to announce that I am back, and with a number of projects already underway; number one being this blog, which has two purposes.

First, to share my adventures of moving from Australia to a tiny little land mass next to the deepest spot in the ocean, the Marianas Trench. Second, to provide some practical input into the whole long distance relationship shtick and migrating countries. I am aware that visa requirements change faster than a baby goes from laughter to tears, and is as different between countries as snowflakes are from each other. Nevertheless, I want to take the chance to provide some practical tips that I believe will remain relevant to most relationship visas for some time. None of these tips are legal advice, and I would recommend consulting a lawyer if you can afford it before you start the process. It was the best two thousand dollars my wife and I have spent yet.

What makes me qualified to give advice on long distance relationships you ask?

Well, I’ve been in two myself. The first one I royally messed up, and it didn’t last long. I learnt a lot of what not to do, though. All I learnt from that I got to put into practice when against all odds I wound up in another distance relationship. This one we were even further apart; 3000 miles of ocean lay between us. We went two years and were in person for only two months out of that before we got married. Now I want to take the chance to share some of what we learnt with others who are navigating this emotional rollercoaster of a time.

I will end with saying, if you’re in a long distance relationship, you can do it! It’s tough, but so worthwhile; don’t listen to all the nay sayers who claim it’s not worth the time and effort. I can tell you first hand that it is worth it, and I know dozens of people who will back me up on that!



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