Not sure if I’m going to pull the dustsheets off the furniture in here or not. Much has happened in the world (my little world, our big world) since I took one last look around and locked up. I didn’t think I would be gone this long. Now I’m thinking about creating a new website: less expat and more about writing and how I put my life into my writing. Not memoir but just the way I use the raw materials of all you humans around me. AND, and and and the new website might also be home to news about a published novel or two (or ten?) one day.
What would I talk about if I did return here?
I could talk about how becoming a UK citizen has changed me (not at all).
I could talk about what it was like to live in Oklahoma for two months (the first time I’ve lived there in 41 years, the first time I’ve lived in the States in 26 years) while my mother was dying (heat so hot it radiated off the ground as well as the sun and lots and lots of guns–I discovered I’m a good shot!).
I could talk about travelling for the first time with my newly adult daughter (she is a fairly perfect travel companion–full of curiosity and very chilled).
I could talk about the new, close friendships blooming through mutual interests (wine! literature!) with my adult (step)kids.
I could talk about books I have found and loved (Wishful Drinking (gutted about Carrie Fisher, no, more upset than that), Olive Kitteridge (humanity!), The Essex Serpent (words like pictures in an art gallery) to name a teensy-tiny selection of a long list), or new friends I have found through my writing, or new discoveries of old faves (Eudora Welty reading ‘Why I Live at the PO’, my all time favourite short story).
I could talk about going to The National Portrait Gallery more (and simply, London more), or the daily walks with my new dog (a Doberman), or taking the last of our children to university and becoming an Empty Nester (which I am taking to like a duck to water).
I could talk about the people who have been assholes or the people who have helped me turn my life into a kintsugi bowl (all part of that morass of raw material that I shall draw from–oh! and if the shoe fits…) and how utterly wonderful those beautiful old souls are.
I could talk about all the “team building exercises” (annoying phrase but also accurate) my husband and I have gone through that have brought us even closer together (silly carefree like missing the last train after theatre and late dinner at The Wolseley and booking into a ridiculously posh hotel for a night of more fun… Or the new friends we’ve made together just by doing a few different things from our usual Date Night every week. Or memory lanes that led us to his uni reunion and meeting with old friends I haven’t seen in 20 years. Or swirling happy light-hearted weekends away as a couple, or chatty laughing family get togethers. Or the jagged bitter variations of pain and grief (boats in hurricanes at the equator of midlife, health scares, and two mothers gone in six months of each other). Or the exciting plans to become business partners in a new venture together).
I could talk about epiphanies and growth and plot twists and Ideal Self vs True Self and How I Found My Voice during a free fall one night last spring but I’m not sure any of this is right for a blog about the Longterm Expat Lifestyle. If I started up this blog again I could talk about two years in the life of a forty something anywhere in the Western world.
Or, I could write a book about it.
Now that’s an idea.
For now, I might scribble a few things in here from time to time. For myself. My friends and family have long forgotten this blog, I have deleted Feedburner and my subscription for the stats counting site has long expired so I will have no idea who my audience is from now on, but that’s okay. This writing is for me until I decide who else it’s for (how liberating!).