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Things I'll miss, things I won't

travel
I started a list a couple weeks ago of things I imagined I'd really miss about Doha -- and things I was looking forward to about the US. I never finished cleaning it up, but I figure I should post it now so I can see in a few weeks how accurate it was.

Things I'll miss about Doha:
  1. Getting to know awesome new CMU-Q employees every semester; this is the best place on the planet to make friends.
  2. Our students. I will probably never work in an environment so diverse again, or have so many chances to learn from the students I'm theoretically teaching. :-)
  3. The travel opportunities -- I'm so grateful for the amazing places we've visited while here.
  4. Unimaginably spectacular fruit juices.
  5. Bharath's navrattan korma, and Petra's 82-cent falafels.
  6. Breezing into a hospital without an appointment and seeing a specialist 5 minutes later.
  7. Souq Waqif -- hanging out with friends, drinking lemon mint, smoking shisha, and people-watching.
  8. The fact that grocery stores sell my favorite American foods, my favorite British foods, and yummy local stuff.
  9. A4 paper! It's just so much cuter than 8.5x11.
  10. Being part of Education City -- feeling like I'm part of something new and awesome happening in the world.


Things I'm looking forward to (this was written before I knew I'd be going to Pittsburgh):
  1. Not being told by the government what websites i can & can't visit, what movies I can & can't watch, what books I can & can't read.
  2. No "Family Day" (explicit government policies that ban less-desirable people from public spaces at certain times).
  3. News media that is free to talk about societal and governmental failings. Relatedly, having outlets for disagreeing with government policies (protests, letters to editor, voting) other than bitching about them on my blog.
  4. Getting mail in days instead of weeks; in the last few months Qatar has started censoring mail more, so the process has slowed unbearably.
  5. Being treated by waitstaff, cleaners, etc., like a fellow person, not like a superior being from another planet.
  6. Being able to get things repaired in my house without weeks of unanswered email followed by an inability to accomplish anything due to difficulty communicating with repair people.
  7. Walking and taking the bus!
  8. Being more environmentally friendly (not driving everywhere, not running the AC all the time, buying organic food, buying stuff from Goodwill/Craigslist, etc.)
  9. Laid-back drivers.
  10. Mexican food!!!!!


I already know I overlooked a lot of important things. (Things I miss: being treated like a queen because I'm pregnant. Things I'm excited about: TREES! CLOUDS!!!) I figure I should document my reentry shock like I documented my initial reactions to Doha, so I'll keep you posted!




Comments

(Anonymous)
May. 30th, 2010 03:23 pm (UTC)
Ahhh....!
You're right. I sometimes forget all the stuff I miss being here, but I can agree with all of the things you listed. And many of the nice things in Doha you mention I would second as well. I hope you're re-adjustment isn't too long or arduous...but I'm sure it won't be.
I imagine that soon you will be walking around barefoot in Frick park, trampling on the grass, with a big grin on your face as you hold hands with Justin, walk your doggies and push Zoe in her stroller... :-)

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Marjorie in Qatar
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