Friends & Family

If you are going to live the expat life, you’ll be away from family and friends for months at a time. This is one of the negative aspects, but it also means you’ll on occasion travel back to visit. We are on one of those visits right now, after six months setting up our casa in Mexico. Is there anything better than seeing old friends, or getting together with your family, especially your grandkids?

The BrewDogs strike a pose

We recently spent a long weekend renewing friendships at a small reunion with my old “college classmates”. I use that term only the your familiarity, because I did not go to college, I went to West Point, which has a passing similarity to college, in the same way that a Sunday drive in the country is similar to the Indy 500. I like to say we did not matriculate, we were institutionalized.  Anyway, the Long Gray Line has a way of instilling lifelong friendships, so it was great to get together and share stories, learn of life’s twists and turns, and just talk. Because of our shared experiences, we all feel very comfortable around each other and easily fall back into an openness which belies the years apart.

Tunnels & Hills aplenty

As enjoyable as old, lifelong friends can be, nothing bests family, especially grandkids. Lately I have spent mornings constructing an awesome rollercoaster, taking a canoe trip down the Little Miami river, and having an epic water gun fight, all with my oldest grandson, Ian.

It is a simple joy, but simple pleasures are most often the best. It is hard to pack missed months together into a week or two, but we plan to take advantage of our newfound leisure time to visit more frequently. We are blessed in that Ian’s other set of grandparents live nearby, so even if we miss him, he does not lack for grandparental attention!

Next up, a mini-family reunion and a visit to “the Shrine.”

2 thoughts on “Friends & Family”

  1. I think we each make choices and then make it work for our satisfaction and enjoyment the best we can. We live near children and grandchildren, but have to travel to see others. We take adventure trips as needed or possible (2 weeks in Prague and Budapest next month), and we make frequent visits to see family or friends when they are ill or elderly (in San Antonio with my almost 97 yo mom now). But whatever our choices, we can make it work because retirement affords us the TIME which is so precious (and hopefully the resources). Glad you and Judy are living your dream–ENJOY!

  2. Pat, from your “friends” side of the post. It was great that you were up here a little while ago to visit the center of the universe again. As the gang probably told you over coffee, I couldn’t join you. The latest flap with the board, if you know what I mean. Next time, I promise. I’ve now passed my own 30 year mark, and won’t be far behind you into retirement. Not Mexico, but probably the ancestral land of my peoples in the Shenandoah. Barry Zulauf

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