We Thought Our Grass Was Greener

Post 553 of 930

The funny side of… well, everything really 😀

This exerpt has been taken off the author’s blog page –

Divij Patwardhan

It really is a privileged lifestyle when you think about it; being brought up in a multicultural surrounding such as that offered to us in Dubai. International schools exposed us to over eighty nationalities and travelling the world during the summer (logical choice!) opened our eyes to various cultures and religions. We made friends around the globe who welcomed us into their homes and made us a part of their lives. Completely surrounded by such diversity around us made us feel as if we were ready to fit in anywhere in the world.

So there you were ready, preening, almost bumptious at your ability to adapt, making your way into another part of the globe ready to make it your home. That was when a pesky, wryly situation arose. Something you never saw coming, crept up while you tried to adjust and made you realise that no matter how much exposure you thought you had, you would always have to face a certain degree of culture shock. But coming from one of the most diverse and multicultural places in the world, how is that even possible?

Well, this culture shock was of a different mire altogether. It didn’t target your knowledge of the world and different nations or cultures; it targeted your lifestyle. Being self-sufficient was an art you rarely practiced, something that dawned on you when you burnt your first eggs. Doing laundry was as good as understanding Latin, I mean who really knows what ALL those symbols mean. So, you took the safe road by throwing everything in and praying the cold cycle didn’t make the colors run or that the dryer didn’t make your clothes shrink down a few sizes. Let’s face it, you never saw yourself mopping and sweeping your own room or building the furniture you purchased either.

This was just the beginning of your woes as tax, a way of life you conveniently avoided, burst into your life like that annoying relative who decided to drop by. How cumbersome did spending become when you had to sit and calculate fifteen percent for tip. Paying bills at the end of the month was demoralising as you watched your money trickle out of your bank account in one day. Changes in tax reform then questioned your knowledge of politics, another aspect of life you were never really exposed to. As all your comrades sat around discussing different policies while you politely nodded along, hoping not a single one would actually alter your life drastically.

We should appreciate the opportunities we are blessed with; from a lack of college loans to the myriad of international friends and relatives. However, we should not forget that there are many aspects of life we have never been exposed to; working two jobs to make a little extra cash, knowing where to get the best and cheapest food, handling a savings account for college tuition, doing general household maintenance instead of calling the “guy”, laying out traps for that family of rats that came calling one rainy night. These scenarios may not be ideal but they make a person self-reliable and independent.

There will always be a difference in the type of lifestyle we lead compared to that led by so many people across the world, but when certain situations arise, instead of panicking over our lack of experience, we should ask for help and be ready to learn. Perhaps one day this will give us an appreciation for the tasks we are often unburdened by in this urbanized Dubai.