Sunday, June 13, 2010

Goodbyes Suck

More from here in the coming days, but for now:

We are Leaving Oman in Early August for what looks to be a 3-4 year stint in the US. I'm Sad and Happy at the same time, but I think anyone who reads this blog regularly will also point out that I am seriously burned out on Muscat, and it's time for a change. Really, I've had a total sense of humor failure.

On the subject of moving on, it would appear that my truck loves me almost as much as I love it. We listed my incredibly reliable and perfect truck for sale on Wednesday night. Thursday morning, his battery died, and could not be convinced to accept a jump. I think it was his way of telling me he does not want me to sell him? Three days and an ungodly amount of hassle and terror later I have a new battery, (which cost 49 freaking rials!!) and things seem OK. Fingers Crossed.

My best friends drove down from the UAE for our farewell party over the weekend. I've been working, partying, and having truly ridiculous adventures with these people for the last 8 years, and they are the only people I know who I can be myself around. When we get together, the conversation and the wine flow like water, the laughs are unending, and the adventures are so epic I am unable to describe them to normal people. I am more at home around them, than I am anywhere else.

I managed to hold back the tears when they left on the return trip yesterday afternoon, but I'm a total wreck now. Boogers, weeping, red eyes, etc.... you know the drill. I'm gutted. I had forgotten how hard it is to say goodbye to someone you really, truly, deeply and passionately love. What if there is nobody where we are going who I can talk to, or laugh with?

I took our wonderful housemaid, who has been caring for our daughter with compassion, love and discipline since the day she was born, to the US embassy yesterday morning. I was hoping to get a visa for her to come to the US with us for 2 years. We really thought she had a chance to be granted a visa, given her work history, age, attachment to the kid, that she is not a flight risk, and because the world is a fair and just place where good people eventually get the good things that are due to them. She could have done two years with us, and as she is 55 already, retired back to Sri Lanka in comfort.

Her visa was denied, in the kindest and most empathetic terms, by the really lovely woman who interviewed her. It's a computer issue, as far as I can tell, that the terms of our posting are too long to allow us to sponsor a nanny / housemaid. The Embassy people were genuinely wonderful, empathetic, and kind, but rules are rules, and it's not going to work out to bring her along with us. I feel sort of bad for the embassy staff having to deliver news like that on a daily basis.

Tita is gutted. This world, that has pretty much been shitting on her since the day she was born, continues to do so. I feel like a total Asshole foe even getting her hopes up. It just does not seem fair. Tita has been raising other people's children for the last 20 years. She cares for our daughter like her own, and does it with equal measures of love and discipline. We had sort of hoped that a nice reward for all her years here would be a 2 year trip to the states, where she would make lots of money (we have to pay her by the hour, provide health insurance, etc... ) see a little more of the world, and atttend school to learn how to use a computer so she can type all her journal entries down, instead of writing them.

I don't want to imply that this is a selfless move, I assure it it is totally selfish. If we really, truly cared, you could ask why we have not been paying her by the hour at US minimum wage here, or why we did not send her to computer school here, or why we have not brought her along on holiday with us in the past, if we want her to see the world so badly. Those are all fair questions.

We will leave her with a generous severance, arrange a shipment for some of the stuff she has amassed with us, and try to find her another good family to care for for the next couple of years before she returns home to Sri Lanka. We have met informally with a few potential families, however they seem to think they are hiring a slave, and not a Nanny/ Housemaid. Hopefully we will find someone good where there can be a mutually beneficial relationship.

Moving On, hugs and kisses to a few of my haters out there in the comments sections. Way to go Trolls, you guys make my day.

More later in the week:
  • How some of the stuff my kid says freaks me out.
  • Three weird small-world encounters we've had lately.
  • An update on where to shop, what to eat, and how NOT to murder your own child during the summer months.


Omani Princess (not Omani LOL) said...

I'm so sad... I love your blog and how you can make me laugh and forget for a moment some of the things that drive me insane about this country that I love.

Varun said...

a very moving blogpost.Cheers to ya !!! @varun_kv

Expat Mummy said...

I have a pregnant friend who is need of a help, full time live in?? Do you have an e-mail I can forward to her?

Suburban said...

Thanks Guys. You are all too sweet.

Expat Mum, she can email me at and I'll get straight back to her. Tita is an absolute diamond.

Undercover Dragon said...

That is a bummer Suburban.

You have real comedy observational talent girl... ever considered a career in standup? You couldn't do worst than Amer did the other night.


Best of luck in the land of the Great Satan. Fortunately it does seem Satan provides great food, bars, music and health care. And professionals who tend to do a good job.

I'm sure you'll find friends there too.


Sarah_J_Evans said...

Such an awful thing not being able to take the nanny. The little one will be so upset. Visas, work permits, passports etc cna be such a nightmare for people. I feel really lucky that having a UK passport allows for much greater freedom for seeing the world.

So heartbreaking - I hope you find a good family for her to work with.


smallest-fry said...

There are plenty of your people back in the states too, I rpomise. Goodbyes suck, but there are plenty of new, and old, friend who will come into your life back in the US.

I'm sure some people are simply ecstatic for your journey to the US...

Dhofari Gucci said...

Boo! I can't believe you're going!


Say yes.

Please say yes.

We'll all follow. Faithfully.

Anonymous said...

I have really enjoyed reading your blogs, but have never commented before - Good Luck in the US, and keep blogging!

Suburban said...

Thanks for your lovely comments! I will keep blogging from the US, because i'm expecting some serious culture shock. Stay tuned.