They say “A kiss is just a kiss”, that is until you almost kiss your new friend, husband’s co-worker, or their spouse right on the mouth.
Every culture has a different way of saying hello and goodbye. Being surrounded by all different cultures here, the learning curve for me on greetings and partings has been high.
Before I moved here I read that as a woman I should never extend my hand for an Arab man to shake. What I didn’t read was that the second time on I would see someone I had met who was European, there would be a kiss on the cheek. Or two. Or even three.
This is where it gets totally confusing for me.
I am used to a hug, or an occasional cheek kiss back home, so when someone naturally goes in for the second cheek-kiss and I have forgotten that it would happen, it makes for this awkward second where I am face to face with someone and they probably think I am going to kiss them on the lips.
Then the next time they see me they decide, “I’ll only give her one kiss, since that’s what Americans do.”
“And I am thinking, “I’m ready! Two kisses. I got it down this time.”
And we are right back to where we are started.
Times like this I wish I could just Houdini into and out of social greetings.
What else has been weird for me is learning a new form of English. People are constantly telling me that I speak “American” English. Not the English the rest of the world speaks. There are days where I don’t feel like I don’t speak English at all.
I crack a joke sometimes, and no one laughs. I am convinced it’s because they don’t understand my “American” English, and not because my humor is not funny.
Aside from these awkward moments, I am having a blast here! There is not really a lot to complain about.
Every evening it seems there is a beautiful clear night sky.
It’s sunny almost every day.
The sunsets here are what I have only seen in pictures. And they happen every day.
The weather here is near perfect right now.
I have met the most wonderful people, who I am so lucky to have as friends.
I’m learning golf. With it, I’m learning patience, but having a blast doing it.
I still get to playing tennis. Outside. In the winter.
I get to paddle board in the ocean whenever I want.
The city is always bustling and ready to provide a good time. If you know me, you know I love a good time.
I’m getting visitors in a few weeks!!!!!!!
I got a care package!!!!! With Triscuits in it!!
Sure is starting to feel like home here.