Saturday, December 14, 2013

10 Ways Living in a Developing Country Ruined Me for Life

Ever since I returned from volunteering abroad a year and half ago I have been a little bit different.

Of course on a deep level my heart was changed by the hope and heart of the people in Tanzania, but some of the ways living abroad affected me remain on the surface level. I'm often reminded of these things when conversing with other people and I realize, I may never be "normal" again. Because I am certain I am not the only one who has continued third world habits in the first world, I decided to put this little list together for others (hopefully) to relate to. Here's to hoping I'm not just crazy.

10 Ways Living in a Developing Country Ruined Me For Life


1. Bugs or hair in my food doesn't phase me. Not even a little bit. I just pull it out and keep eating.  I have drank water from a urine infested water hole in the Africa dry season. I think I can handle it if a fly touched my spinach leaf. Food is food and I'm hungry.


2. While I do own a maxi skirt I rarely wear it as I spent three months in nothing but sad, Goodwill versions of the now hip, fashion style. Sometimes I would put on pants in the privacy of my room and run around feeling like Ariel after she got her legs.


3. My sense of personal space has disintegrated. While I don't generally hold the hand or kiss the cheek of someone I have just met, It doesn't bother me if they do it to me. Bring on the excessive touching!


4. Besides when mixed with other delicious Mexican cuisine I would prefer to never eat rice and beans again. It's not the taste that is the problem. Let's just say Sir Mix-a-Lot was not lying about what those foods can do to a backside!


5. I can't bring myself to throw out clean water. This is why I have a dozen half empty water bottles in my car. I would feel so terrible to waste it. I will eventually drink them...eventually.


6. I now only eat farm fresh eggs and that is only because I don't have room for a chicken in my apartment. It does slightly make me feel like a snob but store-bought eggs just don't taste as good!


7. I sometimes decide to walk places I would usually drive to just to change things up and take in the scenery. Unfortunately, when I tell people I am going to be doing said act they automatically question my sanity.


8. I can't look at the price of an item without equating it to the amount of meals, vaccines or school fees it could provide. This in turn will keep me from ever owning a Coach purse or Jimmy Choo shoes. 


9. When people of color feel like they are being stared at in predominantly white areas, I can legitimately say I once felt the same way.


10. I'll never be content with staying home and "settling down." What I have seen and where I have been is just the beginning to a very exciting adventure. I can't wait to get out in the world again!

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