Sunday, February 6

re-entry syndrome

Dividing life between two vastly different cultures has its challenges when the time comes to switch from one to the other.  I consider myself quite adaptive; can sleep anywhere, talk to most people, eat off a street cart or use the correct fork in silver service - however coming back to the west after nine months at out island home, I went through a minor melt down.

The first four days were the honeymoon period, after which came confusion and denial.  Then five days of anger, frustration and hopelessness, when I found myself looking at jobs in Antarctica, and pricing flights back to Indo. Finally, three weeks on I can claim acceptance and presence. 

It took me many years to be at peace with my life in Indonesia and the values of a life less ordinary.  Blazing a path outside the norm of western expectations, I stumble on the wide, paved highway of extreme busyness, expectation and consumerism, not to mention the shock of shopping in the unnatural environs of a supermarket and the levels of obesity in the checkout queue.  

I couldn't believe I had to get a calender to keep track of appointments and events, such is our island life void of  any schedule or social agenda.  Having the daily paper was exciting for the first two days, then I felt overwhelmed by the influx of information, most of it total garbage.

No doubt many of you will scoff at my conundrum; oh the pressure of returning home after months in a tropical paradise. It has taken me a while to crank up to speed, and I feel my resolve challenged regularly, but the new season apples, sparkling summer days and exciting new projects are a source of daily joy.

Peace is at every step.

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