On Sunday I spent a wonderful afternoon in Boston with some lovely ladies. The Expat Wives Club, as I think of us!
One of our number was celebrating a birthday and we joined her for afternoon tea in the Bristol Lounge at the Four Seasons. Very swish! One of our number was missing, and missed.
It was a beautiful afternoon and I took a stroll through Central Boston on my way there. It was sunny, it was warm(er!) and I felt refreshed; and reminded of why I love the city of Boston so much.
As I walked past Quincy Market and the State House, down Tremont Street and through the Common, the sun was streaming through the buildings, making decent photographs impossible, but leaving me these wonderful reminders of a sunny afternoon.
Our get together finished with a stroll back across the Common and through the wonderfully quirky Beacon Hill; perfect.
While we ate a beautiful brunch, with a simply fabulous selection of little cakes (deciding they were calorie free as they were each only a mouthful, or so…) we chatted about our day to day; sharing our latest adventures, our most recent aargh moments, our irritation with the snow!
Brought together by our shared circumstances, our get togethers are fun and comforting. We’ve come from the same place, emotionally and in some cases literally! We share frustrations and amusement at our new lives. Some of us even share an accent :) We understand the tough days and we laugh at the same unexpected moments.
When all four of us pulled out our shiny Bank of America cards we shared a moment of understanding and laughter. It would seem this is the Bank that is most welcoming to Expats with no credit history :)
As we chatted about houses and schools and the fact that bread seems to last forever, while best before dates are a rarity; we laughed at how similar our experiences are and how wonderful it is to share those experiences with people who really understand.
Life as an Expat can be lonely at times, shared history and cultural references are missing; the looks of confusion on the faces of friends/acquaintances/baristas (!) can become wearing at times. A couple of hours in the company of people who require no explanations, no additional information, allows you take a deep breath and relax. Switch off for a bit and have a break from the cultural and language translation that is a constant background murmur in your head.
Although I was slightly taken aback when I actually remembered to ask for ‘non-fat’ milk and the waiter looked slightly confused and said ‘skimmed?’…!
A truly lovely afternoon, one that we will hopefully repeat sooner rather than later.
[A little background to our group: our husbands all work together; three of the husbands worked in Edinburgh before we all moved here; I know one of the wives from Edinburgh; I had met another at a Christmas party many years ago… It’s a small world isn’t it?]