Friday, January 15, 2010

Transient Society

{image from leovdworp}

I am an extremely sentimental person. To the point that it's nauseating.

Case in point; last day of primary school every threshold of every class I stepped over for the very last time I got tears in my eyes. This make a certain, integral part  of the expat life very hard to deal with.

September in Dar is like the opening of hunting season, we always joke that the guys should go and wait at the airport to catch the fresh new contract workers as they get of the plane. People usually come in on a two year contract, love it in Dar, want to stay and get denied so this has caused that over the last three years we have had seven very good friends leave, for a variety of reasons. 

Now you may ask how we made 7 (actually a lot more) really good friends in such a short time? It might be my sparkling personality or the Photographers XBox, but the interesting thing about expat friendships is you sort of skip the whole 'hey..., maybe...., should we,' part of normal friendships. You meet, you decide yes I want to be your friend or no I don't and then you go straight onto being the best of friends and sharing life. One of the reasons for this is definitely shared experiences(suffering) and also the sense that this is not forever so lets make the most of today.

Coming to Dar as a naive 22 year old this part of expat life really made me sad and I asked a good friend, who was born here how she handles it. She had quite an interesting outlook on it all; she finds it refreshing to have this constant ebb and flow of new and old faces. I tend to agree with her, I think we open ourselves up more to meet new and different people we would usually not have spent time with, and in doing so you discover things about yourself. 

But that doesn't make saying good bye any easier.

Last night at a girls dinner for a great friend who is leaving on the early flight tomorrow,someone mentioned that you seem to form more deep and meaningful friendship in this bubble we call Dar. It might be because everything is so close together...the random sighting of a friend buying groceries turns into a night of stirfry and wine, or as mentioned early the sense of 'suffering' together in this harsh and beautiful country.

However painful (and there was a lot of tears last night) the process of saying good bye is, another door opens for, as another friend called it, international friends meeting in exotic destinations! So to all the amazing friends who have left, and to the one leaving tomorrow, you have touched me deeply and you will be sorely missed. And to all the great friends who I am yet to meet...can't wait for a random evening watching the sunset over the ocean with a glass of wine.


1 comment:

  1. I agree with you Mary! I especially like the random sighting of a friend at the supermarket that turns into a stirring fry of wine and great company!