Holly Asbach, Midwest Expat

Since my experience away from the Midwest was such an interesting time for myself, I often think about other people who have left the Midwest and what their experiences are like. In this series, called "Midwest Expat," I chat with a Midwesterner who has moved elsewhere to see how their Midwest is showing.

It's hard not to love Holly. She's always happy, positive, and talking about something interesting. We met at work, and I was constantly impressed by her ability to simultaneously kill it at her job, be nice to everyone, and plan her next trip across the world. I was so sad to learn that Holly was moving to Colorado, but honestly, not at all surprised. In the least corny way possible, life is truly one big adventure for Holly, and becoming a Midwest Expat is just one step along the way.


My Midwest Is Showing: What is your hometown, and where do you live now? How long have you lived there?

Holly Asbach: I was born and raised in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin and just recently moved to Denver, CO. I have been here for about 2 months and am loving it! 

MMWIS: Why did you decide to move to Colorado?

HA: My boyfriend, Sebastian, got a new job in Denver, and it just seemed like the right time to move in together after being together for 8 years! 


MMWIS: What's your lifestyle like? Describe a typical day.

HA: My lifestyle is generally pretty hectic and busy. I thrive on having a constant to-do list, going new places, and trying new things. I got back from Florida yesterday and am currently on a plane headed to Sri Lanka! Right now especially, life is not typical! We just got a 10-week old Australian Shepherd puppy named Sadie, so my days consist of playing with her and trying to get her not to chew on the carpet. 

MMWIS: Favorite thing about where you live now?

HA: The majestic mountain landscape that I get to see every single day. It never gets old! 


MMWIS: What do you miss most about the Midwest?

HA: Well, besides BelAir tacos, I miss the ease of knowing a city so well. Milwaukee has been my stomping grounds since I moved home from college in the beginning of 2013, and I have tried my hardest the past few years to truly experience everything Milwaukee has to offer. Kayaking down the Milwaukee River, Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra shows, Winter Farmers' Markets at the Domes, Drink & Ink night at Bay View Printing Co., Saturday morning summer yoga in Cathedral Square Park; I have tried it all! 


MMWIS: What don't you miss?

HA: Freezing cold temperatures! Barely being able to breathe the minute you step outside. Sitting in a cold car waiting for it to warm up. I’m cold just thinking about those scenarios! Denver might have a reputation for snow but is actually pretty mild in terms of the cold temperatures. 

MMWIS: What's something you know now that you didn't know living in the Midwest?

HA: How much love people have for Wisconsin and the Green Bay Packers! Not being a huge sports fanatic, I didn’t fully realize the respect and love people have for Wisconsin. I received a full 40-minute chat from my Denver Uber driver about why he loves the Packers. It was entertaining and enlightening! 


MMWIS: How does your Midwest show in your new location?

HA: First, my Midwest DEFINITELY shows through what I wear - wearing shorts and a t-shirt outside in any sunny weather (40 degrees IS warm). I think I also show my Midwest through hard work and willingness to be open to new things. Midwesterners always work to get things done and are friendly, kind people. I continue to carry those values with me.


MMWIS: You're an avid world traveler. What is it like being a Midwestern in other parts of the world? 

HA: I try to be! My Midwest roots have actually been really grounding for me as a traveler. I think being from the Midwest has allowed be to be more trusting and open and warm towards everyone I meet. Last year, I was on a month long tour to Southeast Asia with no other Americans on the tour. I was told multiple times that I was the kindest American people had met, and I credit that to my Midwest upbringing. Midwesterners care. I appreciate the manners and kindness that I was raised with in the Midwest. 


MMWIS: Do you think you will ever live in the Midwest again?

HA: Yes, definitely! I love the hospitality and kindness of the Midwest, as well as experiencing all four seasons! I could definitely see myself and Seb moving back to Milwaukee or to Minneapolis.

Stay up to date with Holly on Instagram!