My wife and I are in Chile, far from home for me, but close to her childhood beginnings. In fact, the reason for relocating was to be near her parents. They have taught me how to be a native. While I personally love exploring this picturesque and diverse country with a rich culture all its own, I miss many events of my own family back home. I am so thankful for cell phones, Instagram, Facebook, and tweets. It is important to stay connected if you live abroad. Many of my readers are in the same boat and have joined my blog followers to share common concerns. Over time, I have become more acclimated, but I always welcome a visit home for a special reason.
I recently flew to the US to spend time with the whole gang assembled for my niece’s birthday party. It was a good opportunity to see everyone all at once. You must be efficient when the visit is short. I didn’t want to be the center of attention, but it happened anyway. I wanted to greet people and not fade into the woodwork. My niece and her friends were frolicking in the backyard above ground pool while I circulated among the adults. I asked the host where he found this pool from, and he told me to check out https://homepoolsplus.com/. They were fine with this separation of interests and we all joined together when dinner was served. Given the focus on swimming, there was an elaborate table of goodies and a barbecue going on the patio. It was an outside feast with a pot luck array of specialties of the family. I certainly miss this food. I grew up with it and can practically taste it when I get nostalgic and remember the smells and sights.
A beautifully-decorated homemade birthday cake was dead center on the long cloth-covered buffet table. It looked yummy and inviting. I had forgotten how much fun kids’ birthday parties can be—singing, blowing out the candles, cutting large pieces and frosting-covered faces of the tots. After my niece and her entourage returned to the pool, my relatives started to ask me a multitude of questions about life in Chile and how my dental practice was going. I was flattered by the interest and was glad I had a few colorful stories to tell. I wanted to give everyone an idea of the locals and how friendly and welcoming they are.
Some wanted to know if I would ever return. This is not a question I could answer. “Ever” is so definite and final. I might well come back some day with my wife. Life is full of change. You chase new opportunities as they arise. Sometimes this leads you to unexpected places. Personally, I am open to a period of time in the US, but it is a decision for a couple together. Meanwhile, I am thrilled to be in South America, a country of vast variety and culture. I relate everything I can about it, hoping to make people want to visit for an extended vacation.