When you move to a new country there are a lot of things you have to adjust to. In some cases it’s a completely different climate (check), or being far away from friends or family. Sometimes you have to learn a new language or moderate your lifestyle. But what-ever the change required you one day wake up and realise that you have done it, you’ve made the adjustment and you are more-or-less settled in your new “home” away from home.
I truly believe that tools like Facebook and Skype help to keep me connected to the people I left behind. Watching my friends marry, go on vacation or seeing their kids grow up all via their photo album feeds may not be ideal but at least I stay in touch. And that helps a lot.
[three years of cat tags]
Some things about being in Dubai are easier; when you have a flat battery or tyre it’s pretty easy to find someone to help you out. Getting a cleaning service to handle your house-keeping, or finding someone to tailor your clothes – easy. But then you try and do something simple, and it’s like trying to find a needle in a haystack. These are things that make it frustrating and difficult (in that moment) to live in a foreign country. For me it’s the small things. Like trying to find a bag of those funny packing worms so that you can send your mom-in-law a parcel, or find thread and some pins so you can hem your curtains, or find a pharmacy that will deliver your medication when you feel too awful to drive yourself. It can take days to figure out where to go, and sometimes it just can’t be done, and that can make you crazy. These small things I find the hardest, the silly things – things that if I were home-home (as we say in SA) I would know exactly how to do, or where to find.
Stu and I are heading into our 4th summer here, I can hardly believe it. I just took the cats for their annual inoculations, which means new municipal license tags for the year; we are onto our fourth set and it’s an undeniable measure of the passage of time – it waits for no man that’s for sure.
[nasty rusty nail]
Oh speaking of tyres I had a slow puncture the other day, all thanks to this long nasty rusty nail I somehow drove over. The culprit is pictured (the dirham coin is to give you some sense of scale, but if you have never seen one then just know the nail was about 5cms or so).
At least getting that fixed was easy!