[Five Minute Friday] Long

It’s another Friday, so I am linking up with the writer community at Kate Motaung‘s place.

This post is part 17 of the series “31 Days in the Life of a TCK”. 
Come join the whole conversation here. Don’t forget to subscribe! 

“Africa? You’re going to Africa? This is so far away! It’s desert there, lots of dangerous animals, and only poor people!”
I remember my grandma saying things like that when we first told her we would be moving South. She came from a little village and hadn’t gone further than the European boarders, so she was terrified. Terrified to lose her children and grandchildren to heat, sickness, or lions.
She was terrified because she didn’t know. Africa was a long way for her. 

But we went. All the long 8000 km to beautiful Uganda. 
In these two years we had maybe 3 phone conversations (it was before the highspeed internet and smartphone age) with us walking around in the garden to get reception and screaming: “You there? Can you hear me? Merry Christmas, Grandma!” and the signal broke off.
Uganda is a long way.

Fortunately, we had a visitor one day who brought a video camera, so we shot a film for grandma, showing her everything in this new home of ours. The way we lived, the GREEN grass (Uganda is close to the equator and pretty green in rain season), the people we had come to love. 
The next letter we got from her was very different. “Now I know where you are. Now I can be at peace. Africa is not as different as I thought.”

Suddenly, Uganda isn’t such a long way after all. 
Long distances can become very small if we know how to bridge them well. 
I am not saying the kilometers magically disappear. 
And trust me, as soon as I hang up on a skype conversation I feel the distance more than ever before. 
But thank God for so many ways to make the long distances come closer to us. 
To allow the world to reach us where we are. 

Having the world close to us can have its challenges as well – stay tuned for this part tomorrow!

How did/do you experience distances in your life? Any funny stories to tell?

Author: Katha von Dessien

Teacher. Believer in the Wilderness. Third Culture Kid. World Traveler. People and Food at the Table Lover. Writer.

4 thoughts on “[Five Minute Friday] Long”

  1. O yes, sometimes I feel reverse culture shock is even worse than encountering a new culture for the first time! I hope you still benefitted from your time in Spain!

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