Friday, June 10, 2011


After our first three years in South Asia, we had a long list of things we were looking forward to in the U.S. On the top of that list then and now was, of course, family and friends, but that was just the beginning of our list back then. We had a long list of things we wanted to do, experience, eat, and see. We couldn’t wait to dry our clothes in a dryer, drink water out of a tap, eat some ribs, go to Wal-Mart (and Home Depot), and frequently visit that beautiful American invention called the supermarket! After three years, we were desperately longing for advanced western civilization.

We find ourselves in a different position now three and a half years later. We have been back here in South Asia for another two and a half years, and we find ourselves ready to be “home”, but not desperate to be there. We have been thinking and talking a lot about this and asking ourselves the question “Why?” What is different this time? Have we just become more South Asian and feel more at home here? Yes, possibly. Is it because we are now living in the place where we feel like God wants us long term and so we have put down more roots and made this place more our home than our previous city? Yes, I think that is part of it, too. This place is our home. We have now lived more than five combined years in South Asia, and our personal culture has changed. Naomi has lived in Asia nearly 90% of her life. Ezra has lived here 100% of his life. They know no other home than Asia. So we have changed, and our kids have grown up here.

Something else has changed as well: Our memory of the beauty of American has become more realistic. When we were leaving the first time, America was more or less perfection in our minds, and as you all know, that is not true.
So, this time there is a shorter list of things we are looking forward to and now there is a list of things we will miss from here. P.J. is going to miss getting a real haircut, a straight-razor shave, and head massage for $1.50. We are both going to miss being able to go out to a nice restaurant and spending only $15-20. We will miss our friends here, and we will definitely miss our work.

Really what I am saying is that we are content. We are content here, and we will be content in the U.S, and contentedness is the best place to be.