Who Will be my Friends?
This will be my 31st move.
When I moved back to Doha, as I sighed and packed boxes, I took a few minutes to sit down and count them up. 31 moves. A lifetime of changing houses . . .
Until I get to the new location, I am caught up in the crushing details of moving – decisions on what to take, what to leave and to whom, closing accounts, opening accounts, blah blah blah. It can be overwhelming. I always think about that old joke about “how do you eat an elephant?” and the answer is “one bite at a time.” It’s the same with moving. Don’t look at the big picture, just keep moving, one detail at a time, and it all works out.
But when I get there, I wonder who will be my friends? It can be a lonely 6 months to a year while waiting for the right friends to come along. I make friends easily, but the ones who are going to stick, those tried and true friends – it takes a while to figure out who those are going to be.
We are lucky this time, we have family waiting for us. Our son is already educating us on how to pronounce local streets and areas (No, Mom, not “Sehr-vahn’-teys” as the Spanish would say it, but “Sir-van’tees”, not “Tex’-are” but “Te-har”, LOL) and what attitudes and perceptions we might best keep to ourselves if we want to get along.
We want to get along. Ironically, moving back to our own country is more daunting than moving to another expat community. The expat communities are relatively open and fluid, people coming and going all the time, willing to accept new members and welcome them in. This move is going to be to a very different life and a very different community from that in which we have lived the last thirty something years . . . God always sends me good friends. I just wonder who those friends will be?