Foreign Living

“You guys want to go to London for our summer vacation?”

That was never a question asked my in house. Shucks, I’m not sure we ever took a family vacation, let alone travel across the world.

Yet, the lack of global traveling wasn’t because my parents were cruel and negligent. They were hard workers, legal-hustlers, good people.

Seeing the world just wasn’t ever a part of the dinner time discussion.

I’ve been in China now for roughly two months and I keep saying, “man, I NEVER thought I would be in China!”

Growing up I loved sports.

I wanted to obtain a good job(after I realized my prayer of being taller than 6’1 wasn’t really going to come through and sports would only be recreational), marry a pretty girl who shaved her legs more frequently than she washed behind her knees. I figured I’d live in the state I went to college or move to a state with a strong job opportunity. We’d settle there, have three daughters and vow to never put a “isha”, “ika” or “que” in their names. We’d grow old there, be well-respected in the community and own a barbershop named ” D’s Cutz”.

My worldview, at the time, didn’t see myself ever actually exploring the “world”.

I’d make a bold prediction and say, neither does yours.

Last year, I asked a third grade student, in a financially-struggling community, to tell me what state he lived in. He told me the city. I asked him what country did he live in. He told me the state. He said he had never heard of Canada!

Maybe it’s me but desiring to see the world we live in, isn’t being pushed, promoted, encouraged in these times; at least not like the concept of finding a good job, stacking money and getting some status.

Now, let me stop and say that if you’ve got a good job and a great family and are loving life in the city that you grew up in and have a daughter named Tanika, Tanisha or Tanique, I’m happy for you.

All I’m saying is that: this globe is far bigger than you could imagine.

It’s far bigger than I could imagine.

There are cultures bubbling with traditions unfathomable to a country fried steak-eating southerner. There are places on this globe with food so exotic and different that after attempting to plow through their buffet, your taste buds would be screaming for SPAM.

The other day I’m pretty sure we accidentally walked into a butcher shop. There were cages full of ducks, chickens, cats and geese, all staring at me, as we walked by. Their stares pierced into my soul and I could tell that they wanted to whisper, “save me bro. I haven’t seem my brother in six days and I don’t think he is coming back.”

I couldn’t observe that image in the sweet land of America.

The fact that there were over six hundred men and women,in downtown Shanghai, outside in the streets, dancing to 12 different songs, simultaneously, at 9:30pm, on a Wednesday night, rocks my world.

Have you ever thought, “I wonder what the fine people in Uruguay are doing right now?”

Have you ever pondered, “I wonder if the sweet people in Estonia enjoy ‘Scandal’ as much as I do?”

Have you ever fathomed, “I wonder if the great land of Angola hopes that tall tees and jersey dresses come back in style soon?”

This world is too grand to go unexplored. So don’t let it.

Save, plan and just take a risk.

Whatever country you’re reading this in, it’ll be there when you get back.

I promise.

What country have you always wanted to visit and why?

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7 Comments on “Foreign Living”

  1. nina bennett Says:

    Just read something by td jakes that said the same thing……I even no people here n shreveport that cant get to different neighborhoods….but Im glad to c u enjoyin and enbracin life while u r young….that means way fewer regrets when u get my age…..life learn and share with others, u’ll be surprised what comes along d way…..
    Aunt Nina

  2. Shay Says:

    It is such a blessing to have this opportunity. Every day is an adventure. Its true that when one door closes a window will get opened. I never would have imagined living in China but I’m glad that God saw fit to lead me this way. It has been a challenge but an amazing journey thus far. I am looking forward to seeing other parts of the world as well. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Bonita Says:

    I have always wanted to visit Spain. I want to see flamenco dancing; learn to play Spanish guitar and eat some tapas. I would love to experience the Spanish culture. I have my eyes on Africa and Alaska because I’m an animal and nature lover.

  4. sophbee Says:

    You make great points here……China. The culture has always appealed to me because the language, people & traditions are such a contrast from the one I grew up in. The people, the habits, the ideologies, the traditions, the authentic cuisine (not the weird stuff) intrigue me. I also want to visit Venice.

    It’s good to hear from you here! Tell KaToya I say hello..


  5. Hmm, what’s next on the list. Spain sounds nice or another Spanish speaking country! Its been a great pleasure being here in China and to think it hasn’t even been 2 months for me. Looking forward to see what is next here and anywhere else, HE sees fit.

    PS. HEY sophbee

  6. Mary Holby Says:

    Hey yall.
    I thought the same ‘I can’t believe I am here in China!’ A middle aged woman who has never left the North American continent. I would like to visit New York City and Washington DC. I know they are not other countries but are important to my own. Also I would like to go back to China.
    Be careful in the shops, it is quite disturbing to see the dogs in there.

  7. Andy Says:

    Well said mate, could not agree more


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