As we begin to plan I am very excited about getting back to some familiar things, and away from some of my less favourite things…but there are also a lot of things I never knew I needed that I now cannot imagine life without. Here are the things I will miss and those that I won’t miss from my Life in the Bay.
It is almost inevitable that during your time abroad, occasions will arise, that will make you really feel the distance from home. This may be something wonderful that you miss such as a wedding, special birthday celebration, or birth or something much worse, such as illness or death…in the less good times, when we cannot be there, it is more likely that we become overwhelmed with emotion and guilt.
I was always confused when watching American TV shows as everyone discussed doing their taxes, they could be a waitress or a cashier but for some reason they needed to do their own tax…it is safe to say that to my British mind this was incredibly perplexing, and my first tax season last year was a mess. As tax season is upon us again here is what I learnt.
The temporary visitor makes up a large group of non-natives in the Bay Area. With all the world leading educational institutes and tech companies, there are many post-docs, interns, and others regularly arriving for short-term appointments, whether for a few months or a few years. My husband and I are two such visitors, and as this time comes to an end we ask ‘where do we go from here?’
Traditions, whether cultural, religious, or familial are passed from generation to generation. They connect us to the people around us and help us to define who we are. So, when we move to a place with new traditions, a different culture or a different majority religion, we can find things difficult. But being in a new place does not have to mean we lose anything, it might just mean we need to change our traditions slightly.
There is no doubt this has been a scary, stressful and apprehensive time for many immigrant and refugee communities, across the country, and things are still far from resolved. But here at Life in the Bay, and across America, people are not ready to be cowed, they have stood up and said, “No,” often and loudly. People have been coming out, stamping their feet, and shouting, this is not us, this is not our America and we will be heard.