Coffee along the way

Coffee along the way
Coffee along the way

May 06, 2015

Oxymorons in my everyday life



(Real "Malva" pudding eaten in the Karoo)
 An amazing adventure began 11 years ago when we packed up everything and left our home country.  Our children have lived longer outside of our our own borders than inside them!  So why am i surprised when i realize we are not a "normal" family?

If you live in another country and culture you start to distance yourself from one way of seeing and doing things.  This can be good or ..... not so good.... :) For example, we find internet shopping much easier than a real shop!  Just too many choices and you never see the price-tags!!  Or, we do not think it strange to speak in more than three sometimes 4, languages per day.  In a way the world gets bigger but also shrinks.  :) I have looked for Lego's in Singapore, books in the USA, cheese from SA, jams from Malawi!  We buy olives from Portugal, cloths from Tanzania, second hand clothes from Finland! :) AND I can find a lift for stuff from nearly anywhere on earth given time - haha!

In a way our life is more simpler but also more complicated.  Does this even make sense?  We have time to play games at night, eat around a table, make food from scratch.  But we also travel 6-8 hours to get to a decent shop in a mini mall!  We never give you the kilometers to such and such a place, we always answer in hours or most often, in number of days it takes to get there.  A Currency Converter is a given on any device in our house!  We have mobile numbers in a great number of countries!  Our accents are a bit strange even in our own dear land!

An African saying says....You have a Watch, I have Time. We may spend hours on the road but we make our own pasta, have time for people, time with our quick-growing boys!  Time - a very precious commodity in our own country and where we live we sometimes have too much of it!  :)  But NO complaint from this side!

Being out of your comfort zone is just that at times - un-comfortable.  But then again, you learn so much about yourself and your fellow man!  I think if you travel you grow up in a whole different sense and direction!  You see God's amazing creativity in people, places and things never seen or thought about by you before!  God has used difficult times to mold me and chip away all the many, many bits that are hindering me.  He has taken away "crutches" of my own culture so that i depend more and more and more on Him alone.

So yes, a lot of choices totally freak me out, my clothes are out of date and i speak funny but i love my life and will not change anything about it!  Ok, maybe add a anti-malaria vaccine!!  Even if i live in a contradictory little world!

Bella, probably in a bit of reverse culture shock!