All posts filed under: Social Life

Fashion High Tea

A couple weeks ago, I attended the Fashion High Tea with some friends. The event was held at Zen Garden and included food, drinks, music, artisan stalls where you could shop, and of course a fashion show. I didn’t stay for the fashion show. I would have, but things kicked off at 2 pm and I had another event that night. I needed to pace myself and take a breather in between. This is not to say that I didn’t have fun. It was nice to dress up and be out with girlfriends. It was nice to be out in a setting that was casual and not stuffy, and yet everyone looked fantastic. My friend, @anelegentleman on Instagram, would have approved of the event and of all the stylish people in attendance (men too!). Several of the most fashionable were wearing designs by my friend Sarah (in the white, red, and yellow dress). I was off brand but I changed into one of her dresses later that night for a party. Her designs were a …

The Awkwardness of Saying Hello

I have friend back home. Let’s call her Kelly*. Kelly is originally from California. Kelly is a hugger. I am a New Yorker. I don’t touch people. It took a while to get used to greeting Kelly. My usual verbal greeting would not suffice. Handshakes, fist bumps, high fives, none of that would work. She went in for the hug. I mean real hugs, not the quick 5 second hugs. I used to joke that saying hello to her involved getting to second base. I do hug some people, close friends and family. Kelly is now a very good friend. I’ve accepted her cultural values of greeting people by West Coast Make Out Hug. Little did I know that this would be good practice for me. I now have to physically interact with people in order to say hello. There is touching. There is a lot of touching. I am not yet used to it. I’m trying. I’m really working on it. I think I can do the hug. I now know that I pretty …

Bizarre Bazaar Christmas Market

The other weekend, desperate to break free of U.S. election depression, we reached out to some friends. It was time to get out of the house. It was time to do something fun and see that there is still good in the world. It was time to snap out of that funk. (Not complacent, mind you. Just no longer being catatonic.) They invited us to join them and some others at the Bizarre Bazaar in Karura Forest. The bazaar is held twice a year. There is one in June or July that is basically a crafts fair. Then there is one in November that is a Christmas Market. Side Note: Normally I would have said a Christmas Market in November would be too early. I like to do one holiday at a time. However, we don’t do Thanksgiving in Nairobi. So, it’s all fair in my book. The market was lovely. In the center there was food and drink—good German beer and food from Brew Bistro. There was a stage with various dances and performances. …

Me, grown up. I look just like this. Art Credit: Bitstrips.

The Third Culture Kid as an Adult Expat

Here I am, middle-aged and all grown up if not altogether mature. (Yes, I look just like that Bitstrips illustration. Actually, I kind of do.) I grew up as a Third Culture Kid and then spent my entire adult life (up until a year ago) in a very international city. Now, I’m an expat in Nairobi (which is another international city). Did my upbringing prepare me for my life today? Yes, it did. No, it did not. Which is it? It’s both. I was totally used to moving. Yes, but now I was leaving the only place that had even been home. I never had a home to leave before. I didn’t know what that was like. It’s harder than I thought it would be.  I have no issues picking up and going to a different continent. Yes and no. Going off on a new adventure? No problem! But I had to think through a lot more. I had to consider my career. I had to think about what it would be like for women …

Me

Third Culture Kids

I grew up as a Third Culture Kid. What is that? In general, Third Culture Kids are those who grow up in a culture/country that is not native to either parent. How this occurs can vary greatly, but the crux of it is that the formation of your identity is not tied to that of either parent or even necessarily of where you are living. You become your own culture (taking in bits and pieces from all that you experience). In my case, this was coupled with moving frequently and on an international basis. In many ways, that made me an open-minded and well-rounded adult. I always had a good sense of geography. I am pretty good at languages. I know how to get out there and make friends. I am culturally sensitive. I love to travel and learn about other cultures. I know how to assess what I value, be it things or people. I know what is truly meaningful versus what is just stuff that I don’t need to take with me. (I have been referred …