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I know a lot of people think that we here in our hollow brick houses are living the dream. I know it seems from the photos that life is just one great big ball of fun, lazing on the beach, partying around the pool or visiting some superb ancient structure. I know that a lot of people are wishing they too had the luck, money, guts (any of the above) to do the same but; life is not always what it seems you know…..

We up sticks and move our lives across continents bringing with us our inbred culture and knowledge of the world through our experiences. We then try and fit into a culture vastly different from our own and one that runs at a much slower place, with a much different attitude. Some try to fit in and succeed. Others don’t.  Some try to conquer their surroundings and ‘teach’ the natives ‘how to do things properly’.  Some natives will humour you and some won’t. Some sit and go quietly mad and some publicly run away with madness for all to see.

It seems sometimes that it’s a life without much consequence. The rules are not the same and therefore, the old ones don’t apply. Affairs are rife, marriages are left in tatters, confidences are boosted before being publicly destroyed, good people leave in pieces and some bad people prosper. The cycle continues as round and round they go on the expat Merry Go Round.

Accountability is just a word in this enclave. Mistakes are made far too often by white collar workers and professionals who, had they been employed in the UK, would have found themselves jobless a long time ago.

But still people flock to the sun with their suitcases packed full of hopes and dreams and just like the cushions that bedeck their balcony chairs, eventually they fade.

It’s the slow drip that drowns you here, the little things that occur far too frequently and drive you mad. The things that we have taken for granted for years in our own country, the simplest of things that should be no problem at all and yet here they create the largest of problems and turn into the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back.

There are of course many many plus sides and if you are lucky and can weather the storm, you will come to appreciate them for what they are. I’m not talking about those people that have been holidaying here for years and have now made the big move, nor the ones that have lived here a year or so, as life tends to still be seen through those rose tinted specs……you just don’t realise, at that stage, just how much more there is to learn.

It’s the ones that get to the 3 or 4 year mark, when a life under this sun has slowly faded their dreams and they are looking for the fastest exit. I have seen so many of them pack up and move on.

Why this mood today I’m not sure. I guess it’s just hearing one more story of one more person’s life that has been changed for the worse, when perhaps they thought moving here was the move that would change their life for the better.

For all of us, as we journey through life’s rich tapestry, at some point we will find ourselves ‘come undone’. I hope there is always someone there for you that can sew the pieces back together.

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