Thursday, February 4, 2016

Hitting the 1 month milestone

Today marks exactly 4 weeks since I departed Wellington, and in this time I have done a lot of firsts. In particular, it has the longest amount of time I have been away from home. I thought this post would be well spent in reflection, to kind of digest the month past and the things to follow. There are a lot of things I already miss about New Zealand, but also, many things I am embracing about Bahrain. In writing this, I don't mean to sound ignorant or ungrateful of the opportunity I have been presented this year, because I am so so lucky - I just see it as important to document my experiences honestly and openly.

Okay, formal disclaimer over. Sorry guys. In a nutshell, the things I am missing are:
  1. the ability to connect with friends and family in the same way (though to be honest, I think pretty much all my friends will be dealing with this sooner or later, if they aren't already)
  2. public transport, like buses, trains, and even walking - really, just the independence of being able to get myself places without relying on another person. That really hasn't been possible here, because there is no public transport, very little pedestrian access to anything, and Amwaj is fairly isolated from everything else.
  3. having relationships with people my own age (asdfghjklweytuiosjf)
  4. anything and everything that relates to sustainability: the ability to recycle, op-shops and second hand purchases etc.
  5. 7.30am starts - honestly, that sounds like a dream now. I didn't appreciate them last year, but little did I know being up at 6am every weekday would become my reality. I feel like a toddler, going to bed at 8pm every night.
  6. singing in a choir
  7. JJ! I'm so scared she won't remember me when I return :(
And on the other side of the coin, the new experiences and things that I love and am embracing are:
  1. Supporting myself financially (minus the free accommodation). I actually really enjoy grocery shopping for myself and being able to go out and buy things that I desire. At the same time, I'm taking it fairly seriously, because I'm tracking my spending and setting myself saving goals to achieve every month.
  2. Meeting people of all different cultures, backgrounds, religions and walks of life. I'm so willing to learn all I can about other people and the ways in which they view the world. Incomprehensible accents and cultural misunderstandings are often hilarious, but always fascinating.
  3. Spending time getting to know my dad's side of the family - who up until now, I only saw sporadically, for a few weeks once or twice a year. Now I see them all the time, and it's great! It feels like Harrison has become my cheeky little brother.
  4. the backyard entrance to the beach. So gorgeous. I can't wait until it heats up a bit.
  5. Exploring a foreign land, so to speak. Learning the ways that other cultures live, and discovering the differences between New Zealand and other parts of the world.
  6. living independently from my parents. I love my mum and dad, but it really does feel so good to have this new freedom, where I'm making all the choices for myself.
  7. my ensuite bathroom. Lol, how superficial - but it is truly supercalifregilisticexpialidocious.
That's the extent of my thoughts for now, and it is hard to believe it has been a month. In a lot of ways, it feels like it has gone by quite quickly, but in others, I feel the gaps of what I can no longer do while I am here (as mentioned above). Having said that, I am so excited for what is to come, and I feel so thankful for this experience!

Thanks for reading. 
Also, it's الجمعة, الجمعة, gotta get down on الجمعة.


  1. Lol Hope loves that Friday ad! JJ will absolutely remember you... Dogs were created loyal 🐾❤️

  2. Hey the paw print pic turned into question marks! Good on ya abz, I think your a great representative of all things kiwi. Xxxx