Learning to Live Abroad


About Keith Van Sickle

Keith grew up in Alameda, California, the son of public school teachers. He got his first taste of overseas life while spending a college term in England and later backpacked around the world for six months.

Grateful for the scholarships that helped him pay for college, in 1987 he started a foundation that helps students from Alameda pursue a college education. Keith and his wife Val fell in love with Europe during a five-year expat assignment in Switzerland, where they lived in a village with more cows than people. After returning to the US, Keith helped start a company whose product was so geeky that he still doesn’t quite understand it.

Keith and Val dreamed of living abroad again but were unable to find another expat gig. So they decided to invent their own. Now they and their trusty dog split time between Silicon Valley and Provence, delving ever deeper into what makes France so endlessly fascinating.

GROCO Staff Writer