Monday, August 24, 2009


Some have asked why I’ve named this blog Xpatriate.  Maybe this will help explain why…

A word is used to describe the life of people who leave their country to make home a far and away place.  This one word describes an extraordinary life, a life of adventure, a life of uncertainty, a life of exhilaration, a life worth living. That word is expatriate.

Expatriates live differently.  The expat (as the expatriate is referred to in international circles) soaks up the world in which they land.  They don’t try to take home with them.  They absorb the smells. They soak up the uniqueness of the culture.

Expatriates are resilient. They have resolve and learn to adapt and improvise.  They expect little.  They find guilty pleaser in luxuries as simple as an air-conditioned restaurant, a hammock by the beach, an ice cold Coca-cola… in a glass bottle. 

The Sandals all-inclusive frequenter is not the expatriate.  The get out of the tour bus and take pictures crowd is not the expatriate.  The loud, obnoxious guy in the hotel swimming pool is not the expatriate. Becoming the expatriate involves is a new way of living, a new way of thinking, a new way of believing, a new way of dreaming. 

I’ve observed something true in practically all expats, once they have tasted the haphazard -- horn-honking -- chickens everywhere -- annoying venders -- pungent odor -- soggy air -- crazed taxi drivers -- drunk policemen – disorientating -- take life as it comes world away from home… they want more.

When the expatriate returns “home” their soul shrivels. They cringe at chain anything. The suburbs and mini vans and strip malls and fast food suck their spirit dry.  They can’t wait to board the next plane to somewhere far and away.

And maybe life is better like that.  The Christ said, this world is not for making home, so live on the go – go and live; really, really live. 

It’s time to live differently.

It’s time to really live.

It’s time to become the expatriate.