>Sometimes it feels like I’m somewhere in a no man’s land. Unlike the Americans who are here for a short, definite period of time with a specific purpose (Embassy staff, folks in the ministry, CIA, you know those sort), we haven’t come for a defined period of time. In addition, since El 3atal is from here, his friends from his youth are all also from here. Those who came from the US all have a built-in network of family and friends. While we share a common experience in that we’ve lived in the states, when they came back here, it’s like coming home for them. For those here for a defined period of time, they seem to have a network defined by their community (others in the same ministry, staff of the same company, etc.). And then… there’s me. No network, no community. Okay, by now you think I’m feeling sorry for myself, but that actually isn’t what this post is about. It’s really more about this experience that is undoubtedly both unusual and common at the same time.
Mind you, it’s no different than moving to a new American city. Suddenly you lose the networks you have built up over time. At least here, I do have something somewhat unique in common with people (being an American). It’s just interesting how out of the loop I sometimes end up feeling. And, the funny thing is that, despite the lack of many close friends, we’re very happy here. Life is settling into a comfortable routine. Today I unpacked and put away the final box. I also filled the new shelves in our family room and cleared another office shelf for El 3atal (I did not get early enough praise for any of these 3 activities). In short, it’s rolling along. The kids are happy as am I. And yet, I get the sense that Leila is also feeling caught in between somehow. She wants to have a new best friend, but we haven’t found anyone that she’s “clicked” with yet. I know that it will get easier when school starts, but it seems such a long way away. The irony of that statement is that it seems like yesterday that we flew over here (really that awful flight is burned into my active memory) even though we’ve now been here 3 months. So, I know that the next month and a half will fly by, and hopefully it will help push us out of the space between and plant us firmly in the space we’re in.