In a couple months, we’ll be going to the US for vacation. On the one hand, we’re really settled into life here, have found great communities to be a part of and are enjoying this time in life so don’t want to leave. But on the other hand, hot-season-is-coming-get-me-out-of-here.
We did the math and figured out that over the last 10 years, we’ve spent 9 months in the US. That’s not much. (Just ask the grandparents!) The result is that we don’t really know each other in America and after a while, life in America has changed to such a point that we no longer know it either.
When we go to an American restaurant, I have no idea what my husband will order. Well, that’s not completely true – red meat usually wins. But does he want a baked potato or sweet potato? Butter on the side? Garden or Caesar salad? I know here in Dakar he’d order a Schweppes Tonic with lime. Will he ask for that at the food court, or go for something we don’t have here, like Mountain Dew?
I recently read an article about things that have disappeared in the last decades and that our kids will never know, like the sound of a cassette tape rewinding or AOL dial-up. (You’ve… got… mail.) I feel that way when we go back to the US. All these things that I feel like are supposed to be there are gone, replaced by new things that – even though they are often more convenient and better – make me feel totally out of it and clueless.
Maybe there’s a movie idea in here somewhere… Recent college graduate time-travels ahead 10 years and has to figure out life in the future. And for bonus humor moments, she’s now married and the mom of a toddler. Oh, what a knee-slapper!
(Now holding auditions for the role of her spunky best friends who will coach her through using those fold-out diaper changing tables in public bathrooms and choosing what kind of PB to buy.)