Pity the Expat

A touching painful tear shed by Maurice Obeid (Harvard student) that attracts the attention to the anguish of the Lebanese expatriates, away from their loved ones:

Beirut airport, by Habeeb.com For the young expat, the dilemma is painstakingly familiar: he sits at the airport waiting for a connecting flight to Europe or America, wondering whether he is committing a huge mistake. Is it worth leaving his people, his culture, and his family behind in search for opportunity? This is not his first time leaving home. In fact, he has been shuttling back and forth for many years now. Yet he cannot explain why his throat still throbs and why he has to fight back tears each time he leaves. Though surrounded by many, he is completely alone.

Unsurprisingly, that subject was tackled many times before, such as Nisrine from (temporarily) Geneva, in her article, “Why are we here?“:

GeneveAs for loneliness, for me, the entrenching isolation has been tangible these past weeks. How can I bear listening to complaints about the bus being late or the ever-dropping temperature outside. How can I stay flexible & open-minded to go through yet another chitchat or even a debate about “terrorism” or the “spiral of violence” recurring in the Middle East. How can I make those people understand the cruelty of “our” reality. In such times, I face it, my foreignism, my ghorbeh. No one around can really understand my frustration & grief.

So, here I am, “here” after all. I get a grip of myself & I recount on my fingers the reasons that made us choose this “here”. I ought to hold fast to those reasons while trying to absorb my helplessness & suppress my loneliness. If you have any other positive things you can add to my list, please feel free, I need it!!

Note that Geneva was ranked 3rd best city in the world to live in.

What about you?

Where would you be living?

1 Response so far »

  1. 1

    Jad Aoun said,

    I’ve never experienced that or the longing to return but I know many who do. Though I may have spent most of my life in the Lebanon, I only lived there between the ages of 10 and 23. Never really got attached to it. I seem to be content where ever I land.


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