Some people collect snow domes from countries they visit, Glen and his wife collected children. Their stints as an expat couple in Tokyo, Hong Kong and Singapore all symbolically marked with the birth of kids – and doubly celebrated in Hong Kong with the arrival of twins.
When they arrived in Brisbane after almost two decades abroad, they faced a dual challenge of dealing with the grief of the end of an overseas adventure and four children who struggled to name all of Australia’s states and territories.
Like many expat families, Glen wanted his kids to have the right balance of feeling like a global citizen at the same time as having a good sense of where they belonged. So after ten years in Singapore and another decade before this in Tokyo, Hong Kong and London, Glen and his wife made the difficult decision to return home.
This was a bit of a shock for the kids who had only ever really experienced Australia on holidays. Glen recounts the family attending the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast and seeing his kids barrack for Singapore.
For Glen and his wife, the transition was tough too. His wife lost her network and for Glen, he had to adjust to creating a career in Brisbane, after having a big role in a regional hub like Singapore.
But what started with a sense of grief, Glen now says is the best decision the Faltings have ever made. The kids are becoming little Aussies and Glen and his wife have started their own law firm – using their global contacts and experience to help overseas businesses in Australia.