The other night we had some family and friends for dinner. (BTW -Mikee is that master of yummy steak. mmm…) Our friends have lived this past year in Thailand and Laos. As you can imagine, they had lots of interesting experiences about getting used to life in a very different part of the world. Here’s a couple points I gleaned. They have a very healthy diet there and feel great. Actually, they both had to get used to the rich, chemically enhanced diet of life back in the States -that never crossed my mind. Transportation is another fun thing -many people ride scooters and pile on. It’s not unusual to see a family of 5 (with little baby squeezed between Dad and Mom) all riding on a single scooter. Isn’t that a funny picture?
In fact, there are many thousands of people that move out of the United States each year for many different reasons. Some are seeking to pursue noble goals of helping others in different countries to learn about the Bible and how to have a better way of life. Some have economic reasons. Everyone is affected by the declining economy as the cost of living (especially health insurance!!!) continues to rise and it is increasingly difficult to make a living. Some just crave adventure. The point is… it’s not a bad thing to stay where you are comfortable and it’s not a bad thing to go beyond your comfort zone.
We have learned that friendship is not based on proximity. Some of our dearest friends live very far away. The people that you love, you will always love and feel close to. This is made even easier by all the modern ways of communication. We are huge fans of Skype. Just a bit ago my sister and grandfather Skyped us while on a trip to Italy. It was great! We had the webcam on and the kids were all crowded around the computer talking to Auntie Nellie and Grampy Norm as if they were right here in person. Michael has employees in several countries around the world and this is their mode of constant communication throughout the day. What a benefit this has been to his business. And, just a couple minutes ago I Skyped video links of the kiddos to some friends in North Carolina. See, we can talk and send video and photos back and forth …and stay close.
Oh and by the way, Joel and Kelly -thanks for your encouraging visit. We had a blast. Enjoy the rest of your visit here in the US. And keep up the great work in Laos.