When you are an expat, no matter which country you are from or to which country you moved, one of the first questions you get from new acquaintances is, "So, what brought you to [insert country]?" I've been asked it ad nauseum, and I ask it. Inquiring minds want to know. Somewhere deep inside me, I'm looking for a reason to stay or a reason to go. I can admit this now.
It's a funny thing, moving to a new country, making the decision to stay. Even after four years, I often experience loss over my community in Key West. As time goes by here, I feel more and more at home. I have friends, I can get around anywhere and am comfortable with the language. The roads suck but that's just part of the picture.
It's not so much my friends – I can visit whenever I want (as long as I don't mind TSA employees seeing me naked with those machines the stimulus money is buying.) It's, well, I've narrowed it down to three items.
#1 is familiarity. Although Costa Rica gets more and more familiar while Key West actually gets more and more desconocida [unfamiliar], I remember that comfy familiarity I enjoyed for so many years.
#2 is the ease of getting food-stuff: buying vitamins in a store (you can buy some vitamins here, in low doses only and for twice the cost of buying them in the states), getting honest-to-God whole wheat flour with no additives (not possible), sea salt (only one place that I know of sells it without additives and that's not for sure), knowing where your food came from and what pesticides were used, knowing that organically grown means organically grown.
I can live with both of these annoyances. Unconsciously.
I love my life here, we have gotten gifts beyond measure by moving here, both as a family and as individuals: physically, intellectually, emotionally, spiritually. How we see the world has been altered in the loveliest way.
Somehow, somewhere along the line, I became insanely political. Like a drunk with her cheap wine, I can't stay away.