In Search of Sunshine
- December 11, 2017
December is here! Are you starting to feel Christmassy? As soon as our American friends finish their Thanksgiving celebrations, the wreaths start to go up on the front doors around our neighbourhood, and it’s official – even in paradise, the festive season has begun. We’ve put up and decorated our Christmas tree and it’s twinkling at me from the corner as I sit down to write this, Micheal Buble crooning his velvety Christmas carols from the speaker in the corner.
Amidst all this merriment, these are the days I find myself riding waves of homesickness more than at any other time...
- September 11, 2017
Reader, ‘tis the season. As the mists and mellow fruitfulness begin to gently settle themselves on the hills in the place I was born, here we greet an altogether different season. Here we watch the hurricanes, and here it is the season of fear.
I imagine you too will have been watching the hurricanes this season. Harvey in Texas, where the flooding was as big as everything else in that great state. And Irma across the Caribbean where this weekend the tiny islands that make up paradise were left naked and utterly defenceless against the viciousness of the strongest storm ever...
- May 26, 2017
A beep on my phone, a message from my BFF across the the world, and the words that showed just how well she knows me: “So I know it’s an outrageous idea but…”
It was an invitation to join her and three other friends for a girls’ weekend in New York City. An escape from my perfect, beautiful life. A chance to leave responsibility behind and pound the pavements with some of my favourite women, shop at my leisure, drink cocktails on the rooves of tall buildings, laugh til my sides hurt, sleep through the night, and spend three glorious days...
- March 23, 2017
This evening we’re going to a little farewell gathering for some friends who are leaving the island to go back home. This will definitely not be the last time we say goodbye to new friends here, but it is the first. And as I feel the loss of the great energy they bring to our social circle here and the gap their absence will leave behind – it’s getting me thinking about the nature of goodbyes.
In my adult life I’ve said the word “goodbye” a lot as we’ve moved around from place to place. I live far away from where I...
- February 28, 2017
I feel like a bit of a mutt, nationality-wise. My passport and birthplace call me British, my upbringing and my heart say I’m South African. Born in one place, raised in another – and now raising my own family here, there and everywhere – sometimes I’m a bit fuzzy about my national identity, about where “home” is.
I’m fuzzy, that is, until the exact moment, once a year or so, I step off a 747 on to the tarmac at Cape Town International Airport. And then it all becomes startlingly clear.
For me the simple truth is that “Home” is more than...
- November 10, 2016
As I sit down to write this, CNN plays in the background – Hilary Clinton has just given her concession speech, and it’s a strange day. As topsy-turvy as the world felt when I woke up this morning, my overarching thought today is, “It’s good to be back.”
Because for the last 5 weeks, our house has been a technological desert: no internet, no TV. It was an unfortunate series of events – a house move, a hurricane, a population needing to have power reinstalled (meaning our needs were rightfully low priority for the cable company) – which left us living in...
- October 12, 2016
Definition: A storm with a violent wind, in particular a tropical cyclone in the Caribbean.
Origin: Mid 16th century: from Spanish huracán, probably from Taino hurakán god of the storm.
Hurricane Matthew was coming, and much the same way as I did before childbirth, I read up on the phenomenon we were about to experience. As with childbirth, I tracked its course as we counted down the days to its arrival, and made the necessary preparations. As with childbirth, the wait was agonising. And as with childbirth, nothing could have prepared me for the reality....
- September 22, 2016
It’s been over two months since we hauled our lives across the world to a tropical island in the Caribbean Sea, and I feel like it’s been much longer. Perhaps because in truth we have been moving all year. Like waves, one change after another has washed over us in 2016 and now finally, with only one more house move to go in the next few weeks, I feel like the time is approaching when I might finally be able to stop paddling madly and lie back and float for a while, maybe take in the view.
When you move your...
- July 18, 2016
In 1998 Semisonic sang such a beautiful and poignant line: “Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.” It was our last year of school at the time, and as far as my friends and I were concerned, the lyric may as well have been written exclusively for us. We danced to Closing Time, clinging to each other and swearing that the passing of the years wouldn’t change our friendship.
As someone who instinctively avoids change wherever possible, I’ve always felt hugely comforted by that lovely line. It conveniently pops into my mind and gives me strength whenever I’m facing...
- June 30, 2016
I’m really happy to be publishing my first Chat with a “Repat”. This feature has come about partly as a result of my nosiness (I love to hear other people’s stories), but mostly because, as an expat, I find the concept of “going home” absolutely fascinating, and I wanted to ask people who’ve done it what the experience was like for them. So here’s the first of what I hope will be many interviews with people who have gone home – in every sense of the word.
Terri-Anne Boers is a physiotherapist and mum of two. Four years ago she moved from London...