I have an apology to make Dear Reader. I’ve neglected my blog in recent months. The move to Bahrain made me lose my blogging mojo somewhat. Even though I continued to cook and post on Instagram and (of course) ate out (a lot!). Unfortunately I had what they call ‘writer’s block’. This post is going to be more about our move & the emotions involved and then once that is off my chest I promise I’ll get back to the business as usual of food!
The move to Bahrain was long anticipated and we were incredibly excited to be joining Mr B. Bahrain is a fabulous place for expats, coming in the top 5 every year in the best places to be an expat in the HSBC expat survey. The food is incredible with the best Indian food I’ve had outside of India. The sun is always shining. But its not home. I underestimated how much I would miss Blighty, how much I would miss my family, my friends, our home, meadows, apple trees, green fields, bird song, crisp winter air and Marks and Spencer (not an exhaustive list!). It hit me when I said goodbye to my family at the airport. It hit the little man much later when he realised he wasn’t going back to his quaint little Kentish school.
My whole world now revolved around building a new life for us all. Everything that I knew and had taken for granted had to be rebuilt in a new, strange & hot (!) place. How at the age of 46 do you make new friends? I was happy with the friends I had thank you very much. Where do I go for my weekly shop? Ocado don’t deliver to Bahrain. How do I stop my little man from missing home so much that he refuses to speak or facetime his family back home as it makes him sad? I threw myself into exercising and went all out on kettle bell classes and boxing until I injured my back and got told by my chiropractor that I couldn’t do any of ‘that’ kind of exercise for a while (if at all). When my dear friend Dom visited us I just wanted to jump in her suitcase and smuggle myself back to Heathrow. When Rudi and Amy, our eldest 2 kids, visited and returned home I was left bereft at the departure gate. Then my sis and her family visited.
Aadi had his best friend and cousin here for a week and he lit up. We showed them our new world & they loved it. I began to see that our life here was actually very good. I moved from ‘missing’ to ‘appreciating’. Aadi seemed to turn a corner too. The day he came out of school smiling and laughing with his new friends was like a huge weight had been lifted. One of the mum’s told me one morning that her son had told her how happy he was that Aadi had joined the school – I could have hugged her. Bit by bit I realised I had the best of both worlds and I truly appreciated it. I appreciate my husband and the sacrifices he made when we lived apart. How he said goodbye to us at the airport at the end of every holiday and returned to the empty flat for over 2 years, I do not know. I appreciate our family, our kids, our big boy Rudi and our big girls, Sophie and Amy. I appreciate my parents and will hug them just a bit longer next time I say hello/goodbye. I appreciate my sis and our what’s app calls which are no longer twice daily but twice weekly if we are lucky. I appreciate my friends, old and new. I appreciate my homes, my countries and the variety of our lives. We’ve just seen Thanksgiving come and go & I’ve had my own little personal Thanksgiving epiphany. Time has flown and we are now looking forward to flying home for Christmas. I am sure I will have mojoless days in the future but for now I am comfortable in the knowledge that Bahrain may not be our forever home but our ‘for now’ home.
So be prepared for foodie posts from both my homes! Variety is the spice of life!