I took classes for 3 years in middle/high school, went to a few meet-ups, and practiced whenever my family from Tahiti was in town. I was far from conversational though, and knew I would have to find an English-speaking company in order to work abroad. Over the course of 2 years, I started with my own company (who had an engineering office in France) and also reached out to similar American companies located in the countries I wanted to live. If you’re interested in tech, most large companies also have European offices and are used to relocating American employees abroad (Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Amazon…) My high-level advice would be: be persistent and have patience.
I recently spent a week back in Seattle and made sure to stop by all my old spots. Friends in Paris always ask me for recommendations on the city, so here they are in one place. Aside from the typical attractions you’ll find on tourist sites, these are my absolute favorite things about Seattle, Washington.