Wednesday, August 02, 2006

比べ物にならない

To live in the Foreign Service is to live a life of constant comparisons: 'At my LAST post I had a MUCH nicer apartment'; 'In CAMBODIA, people were MUCH friendlier'; 'When I was at this mission BEFORE, the work wasn't NEARLY so stressful', and so forth. Even now on my TDY in Tokyo I find myself walking around my borrowed compound unit thinking, 'In OSAKA the units are laid out MUCH more sensibly.' It's funny how comparisons invariably result in your present situation coming out on the losing side. In the military, the conventional wisdom is 'Home is always the place you just left.' I'm not sure how you break that tendency and learn to really appreciate the moment you're in (but of course, in the MILITARY they deal with the problem MUCH better than we do...).

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Katie was much more normal before she went to Osaka...

Katie said...

Well, Osaka certainly makes for a convenient excuse at any rate!

Anonymous said...

Hmmm...growing up as a Navy brat, I can assure you that in the armed service your best post is either your last one or your next one.

Editfish said...

Such comparison is natural, and helps one adjust to the difference in surroundings. And some of the negative recollections can help you adjust more easily, as "such-and-such always annoyed the hell out of me, but now I kind of miss it..."

Current annoyances (Nihongo wa pera pera desu ne...) can be laughed at, with the knowledge, that yes, even that, will one day be sorely missed.