Having already lived abroad for a couple of months, this anticipation is familiar. I have been living in a bubble since May of 2013. I quit my job of 9 years at the end of May 2013. I then biked across the country with a charity group. It was both exhausting and exciting. I met some wonderful people. I faced my challenges and limitations. I have lived on the charity of others since August of 2013. Well the entire bike ride was charity as well.
I have been looking for a new way to live and I have found it. I have found that by simplifying my life, I can live so much better. I thought I wanted a job, actually I still do, but there is no way anyone will hire me for such a short time frame. I am learning to live with less, which means I am living more.
In Liberia, I knew that I would likely be stationed alone. In Jamaica I will be living in a host family. This is not unlike how I have been living. Living off the generosity of others. Learning to share and to live with others is fairly new to me. I have always been the bread winner and the one who owns the home. The one who opens my doors to others. I know how tiresome being a host can be.
The biggest problem I think I will have is not having control over my food. Being a vegetarian feels like being an alien. Often people think feeding a vegetarian is excessive work. It actually is not. Just give me some veggies and grains with some beans and I am good. In Africa this was a difficult concept to get across. The idea that I want my food removed before the meat is put into the pot, seems to be just too difficult. The funny thing is, this is how I cook at home. I make all the vegetarian dishes first and then layer in the meat. Knowing that it is just two of us, I guess makes it easier.
I try to imagine what life will look like for the next few years. I imagine the disappointment in food but in general a great satisfaction in community living. I imagine I will grow and change. That my perspective will suddenly evolve, or eventually evolve. I hope to learn much about how different cultures work. I also really want to see how people outside of our society live. I want to see how community supports itself. How people actually care about each other. I anticipate a huge learning curve, but I also anticipate great rewards.
I have always wanted to see how other people live. To understand why I feel so disjointed in my own society is a huge driving factor in my life choices. I hate the feeling that money matters more than life does. I hate the idea that people do not sit on their porches visiting with neighbors. What happened to our society? When did we change to such self centered ideologists? When did we forget how to play nice with others and to share? Maybe I will never find what I am looking for, but I keep seeking.