Here are ten lesson learned from the past few days in the States. These lessons aren’t new really but things that I had taken for granted when living here before. Being in Manila for a year just makes these all stand out more:
1. I prefer driving where there is orderliness and less honking.
2. I do not like to do dishes or make my own bed.
3. I’m not used to seeing a mess so I clean up now willingly.
4. 70 degrees is not warm!
5. 400 items in your refrigerator is not necessary and borderline obscene.
6. No humidity is really, really great for your hair!
7. I do not like being cold!
8. Having family around is really great.
9. “It takes a village” is such a true statement. Having 5 other adults around to watch, entertain, talk to and engage Coco means I can read, nap, have a conversation. Love it!
10. Running to the grocery store to pick up something for a recipe and them having what you need makes life SO much easier!
I am loving being in LA! Spending time with family has been great for me and Coco. She loves having a dog to play with (she asked me for a pet – said a horse was her first choice but she would also like a dog) and it’s good for her to be around adults other than me and her yaya who can entertain her, but also to discipline and direct her. It takes the pressure off of me which I really like!! It’s more balanced and healthy. It’s been so great I even spent a bit of time trying to figure out if I could/should move back next year! I know, I just posted about preferring the expat lifestyle but I guess I forgot how much easier it is to just get things done in the US. Running to the market is a breeze. Parking is right out front, everything you need is at your fingertips. And there are datable men everywhere!!
But the reality is it’s not a smart move. I have paid off a lot of debt but if I stay abroad 3 more years instead of one more I will be completely debt-free (except for my mortgage). That will give me the freedom to live anywhere in the world. If I am debt-free I can live in London or Paris or NYC or I can buy a little beach-front property somewhere if I want. If I am debt-free I can take some time off and do some slow travel around the world to see all the places left on my bucket-list before settling down somewhere. Being debt-free gives me all sorts of options so staying abroad it is.
Here’s the current list of possibilities for our next move:
JOHANNESBURG CAPE TOWN
Crazy to think about! Fun, exciting, scary! And now to get back to friends and family and living in the present 🙂