Friday, February 27, 2009

When I think of...

I was sitting in an Indian restaurant on one of the main roads in Penang drinking teh tarik, an either Indian or Malaysian tea sweetened with condensed milk, when I realized that of all of the people in my life the one I wanted to share that particular moment with was Llamrei.

Llamrei is Sir Titus, my knight's, wife. And while I was a fan of tea before I started gaming with them, it was Llamrei who really started inducting me in to the cult of the leaf. We would always have at least one pot of tea with gaming, sometimes two pots of the same tea or two pots of different teas, and people would bring in exotic teas to drink and chocolates to eat with the teas. And as I was sitting drinking sweetened tea I thought that I would love to share that moment with Llamrei.

And it got me thinking about the situations that make me miss the people back home. There are certain things that will make me miss people at home, certain situations that will make me think of them. And I decided to try to list them. As I said, when I drink tea I think of Llamrei.

I probably miss Sean the most of anyone because when I'm dealing with my students I tend to think of Sean, especially the third graders, and especially the third grader named Freddy. Since I see Freddy every day, I end up thinking about Sean a lot.

While dealing with the students makes me think of Sean dealing with the teachers makes me think of Mom. While it isn't the exact same situations she has to deal with, when I get frustrated I think of the things she talks about at school.

Tuesdays and 3:30 PM every day make me think of Dad. Tuesdays make sense off hand since Tuesdays were the night that we would go play trivia. But the bells at school don't actually make the sounds of bells, they play little songs or make the generic grandfather clock noise. The ending bell, at 2:30 and 3:30 (when Homework Club ends), is the Jeopardy theme, which reminds me of watching Jeopardy with Dad.

The temples remind me of Spike (my step-dad), because of his interest in Buddhism. I remember almost fighting with him about how would get to keep the book on Buddhism from our hotel room in Hawaii. I think I won the fight in the long run not because I got to keep the book, but because I'm here lighting incense in Buddhist temples in Malaysia.

Tourists and bad movies make me think of Nathan, Andrew, Felix and Cory, because I don't have anyone here to make fun of either with. That actually saddened me greatly the other day when I realized I don't have anyone to willfully and knowingly go to bad movies with me, only to make fun of them. My embassy friends are close, but there was always something special about making fun of stupid people and stupid movies with the guys.

So I won't say that I don't miss people, a lot, or that there aren't times I'm not tempted to cash out and get on a plane to see a person. And sometimes it is hard, when the feeling is particularly strong; but that will make it even better when I do come home again. And I can go almost a whole day now in Bangkok without stopping to say '...I'm halfway around the world.'


1 comment:

  1. Dear Matthew,

    Speaking of which I was watching Jeopardy Thursday evening, and thinking of you. I was (am) convinced that you would have known the final clue and would have joined me in teasing the contestants, each of whom guessed the same, wrong answer.

    Oh, the final clue was, and I paraphrase, this northern European scientist suggested that his tombstone should read "Botanist for the ages" or something immodest like that, maybe it was Botanist of the century.

    Anyway, all of the contestants guessed Mendel (who I am sure you will recall was an obscure Russian Monk that no one even knew existed in his own time). You and I would have agreed on Linnaeus. So, as I watch Jeopardy I also think about you. I also think about you as we continue to lose at trivia!

    Perhaps I will add drinking tea while I am watching Jeopardy. Thanks for the post, I am glad all went well in Malaysia.




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