Thursday, January 08, 2009

Complete and utter rut

For the past four months that we have been in South Africa I have literally done nothing worth noting with my life. I read, surf the net and occasionally drink too much wine, or coffee, or both. While we were waiting for my husband's work permit to come through (first E & Y, the good for nothing company, took over two months to translate 3 measly one-page documents into English - two from Spanish and one from Danish, followed by a prolonged Home Affairs deliberation time of 40 working days. Yes 8 weeks) I was comfortably in limbo. We couldn't buy a car, I wasn't allowed to drive the company car my husband had been allocated, so I really could get no regular activities going, let alone something I would be doing every single day, such as volunteering. I had a valid reason to curl up on the couch with my cup of coffee and go through a book a day.

Now, some days after getting the car, I still seem to be stuck in that rut. I still get up in the morning only to hang out all day long. I have started going to the gym on the estate, but that is not saying much. Again, I'm faced with the question 'what will I ever do with my life'. I'm plagued by nightmares of returning to Europe some time in the distant future and having to work in McDonalds, because no one else will hire a person, who has pretty much never worked a day in her life, not really that is. Not that there is anything wrong with working in Mickey Dee's, but I have actually, eons ago, tried it out for a while and would hate to have to repeat the experience. Burgers and me don't mix, unless the burger is going down my throat.

In Denmark I was studying and finally ended up with a Masters in a very non-practical field. In Mexico I was volunteering, and eventually got far too involved for my own good. But what to do in South Africa? Every time we move I decide this will be the time I'll finish my bestseller that will also garner critical acclaim, i.e. I'll become the next Toni Morrison, Arundhati Roy, or Philip Roth. At this point I'll also settle for becoming the next Stepehenie Meyer or Marian Keyes and just go for the bestseller. I'm easy to please.

The only slight glitches in my brilliant plan of becoming a world renowned author, are that I never seem to feel inspired enough to actually sit down and write, not to mention the fact that when it really comes to it, I'm just not that great a writer. This was a very harsh realization I recently came to as I hit a major milestone in my life. I can still feel the ripples of my existential crisis, even if the only tangible remnant of it is the question. 

I think I'm going to try my hand at poetry now. Feel my desperation. 


lovelydharma said...

What a great blog you have! I started at the back and started reading forward, but had to stop here and comment because I think I could have written this post. I actually might have at some point. I"m ahead of you by a few years in the ex-pat experience and had the same notions in my head about being the next Philip Roth, (or let's be realistic, the next Barbara Taylor Bradford if lucky) and every afternoon, three or four cups of coffee later, I can't seem to get going. Maybe I blog, maybe I don't... maybe I nap (usually) and occasionally do some money generating work... sigh!
But I'm loving your blog and jealous of your wine. Brazilian wine sucks. Looking forward to reading more and seeing how your novel ambitions are coming along!

Extranjera said...

Wow, reading all of it. That's hard core. That's like, reading a book, or like, something. Wow.

With ten years of expattitude I think i'm beyond all hope, but let's not tell the sober me, the drunk mee has too much fun coming up with stuff to do. No reason to rock the boat.

At least In Brazil you can get Casillero del Diablo everywhere, all the time. I envy you.