The Walter Mitty life of an ex-pat wife

Ex-pat life…it conjures up images of brunches and lunches, pyramids of Ferrero Rocher at the Ambassador’s residence, days in the sun and elegant soirees at night…

Hmmmm no, sorry to disappoint you.

Let me ask you this… If you lived your current life in another country would that automatically make it more glamorous?
Would doing your shopping in another language make it more exciting? I don’t think so, not once the novelty had worn off and you realised you’d paid a fortune for an onion and a potato.

I´m not saying that ex-pat life doesn’t have it’s perks, of course it does. I have a nice house and car, much nicer than I could afford in the UK. I get to see parts of the world that would normally be way out of reach in terms of distance and cost but that’s not all day every day.

My day to day is very ordinary. The dogs came back from kennels the other day and they were both ill. I think they were a bit stressed out and they each have a default illness when they’re stressed. One gets Worry Tum and the other gets Worry Bum and they are exactly what you imagine them to be.

One of them gets car sick and pukes. Then the other one stresses out because there’s been an accident in the house so she does a poo. Eventually the puking stopped but the pooing continued….into the night.

I think I have a poo sixth sense because I woke up at 3am and there was one on the floor just under the A/C. It was welded to the floor by the cold air and was nearly impossible to scrub off. However, the thought of my cosy bed gave me the incentive to apply more elbow grease. Ahhhh and all the while the H in peaceful slumber…

Aha! you say, you probably have a cleaner to do that for you. Well yes, but I would like to make the following points:

1)How weird would it be to have the cleaner in my bedroom at 3 o’clock in the morning
2)How minging of me to leave it there till the morning for someone else to clean up
3)I don’t have a cleaner at the moment

We parted company a few weeks ago when I realised our relationship wasn’t going to work. She was also extremely far-sighted…she couldn’t see stuff right in front of her. She mixed up the haldi and the kashmiri mirch boxes which made for a VERY fiery dinner when I cooked a curry the other night. Thank god for yoghurt!

It was a mix up in my masala dabba tin but it could have been a very ordinary salt/sugar confusion back in London. What I’m trying to say is that just because things like that happen in a foreign country it doesn’t necessarily make them more entertaining or more dramatic.

If we want excitement and adventure in our lives we need to put it there ourselves and we don’t have to fantasise about travelling to a different country to do it.

There’s a guy called Alastair Humphries who’s been on some pretty epic adventures. He cycled round the world in 4 years, flew to the moon on a weather balloon… O.k, I made that last one up, but you get the picture. He realised that most people would never or could never have those kind of Walter Mitty fantasy adventures so he created the notion of Microadventures.

You choose a challenge, something doable but which you wouldn’t normally do. Something that inspires a bit of excitement and maybe pushes your limits ever so slightly.

I read about the micro adventures on a blog called http://feveredmutterings.com by a guy called Mike Snowden. He writes a great blog about blogging. He wrote a post about challenging yourself. It’s absolutely true. You don’t need to put on a rucksack and not wash your hair for months to have an adventure and you don’t need to look very far to set yourself a challenge.

The chap who started it, Alastair Humphries, has written about his ‘big’ adventures but has also written about the ‘micro’ adventures, http://www.alastairhumphreys.com/microadventures-3/  He’s inspiring people to take the leap and make their ‘micro’ dreams come true. And as the saying goes ‘Mighty oaks from little acorns grow’.

I think we should all give ourselves a micro adventure challenge. I’m going to be brave and put my money where my mouth is. I’m going to put my micro adventure challenge out there first….
I’m going to write and perform a poem/piece at The Hive on Monday the 20th April at their open mic session.
AAAAARRRRRRRGGGGGHHH and breathe. I’m already writing, the poetry bug seems to be knocking at my door, so the scary exciting bit would be the performance. That is certainly not in my comfort zone.

So, put aside those enormous dreams (just for a minute..), pick a nice easy starter pack sized one and DO IT.
Who’s with me? Let me know what you’ve chosen as your first micro adventure and we can all be mini Indiana Jones’ together (but dibs on the hat and the whip).

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4 thoughts on “The Walter Mitty life of an ex-pat wife

  1. micro adventure…… que miedo!!!!!!!!!!!
    Enjoy yours on my birthday…. me lo puedes dedicar!!! HAHAHA!
    you must send us a copy of what you’re doing and what you’re going to perform!!!!!! Me muero de curiosidad! I’m so glad you’ve found fulfilling things over there. You dreaded going but it turns out to ahve been a good thing… How goes the arty side?

    Like

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