I recently read an article, 17 things that change forever when you live abroad, and it could not have summed up our lives any better. There has been a lot of confusion and misunderstanding as to why we would live abroad, especially in a country in the Middle East, but there is something invigorating about it. When someone asks me why, I generally can’t think of the right words to tell them, but I do know that your idea of home starts to change. You still get homesick, even from the smallest things, but, as that article says, I have learned that “home is the person traveling with you, the people you leave behind, the streets where your life takes place. Home is all those memories, all those long-distance calls with your family and friends, a bunch of pictures. Home is where the heart is.” I have many homes, but welcome to two of the places that currently have my heart. Over the past month we have spent more time at school than anywhere. It has been a whirlwind of emotions, but despite all of the craziness that comes along with opening a brand new school, we finally have beautiful classrooms! The picture with all the sweets in it is from our Eid party. This past week they celebrated Abraham and the sacrifice of his son, and they know how to celebrate. That is a small portion of all the other cakes, cupcakes, cookies, juice, etc. they brought in. Not to mention the bouquets of flowers and candy we teachers have been receiving. This culture is very giving.
I mentioned one of the themes of this experience is to expect the unexpected, and man has that been true. After staying in two different hotels, we are now on our second apartment. We live in a beautiful brand new building, but along with that we get to discover all the nooks and crannies that need a little more tender love and care. 🙂 Qatar is expanding like crazy and they owe a great deal of that to hard-working laborers who come over here with little to no experience, yet they work like you have never seen. They are persistent and always have the biggest smiles on their faces. If we have learned anything so far, it is that attitude makes up everything. These people are so inspiring. Despite their best efforts, we couldn’t quite get rid of the sewage smell from our first apartment, so this past week we moved to another room in our building and all is well!