Well, I've been mulling over the topic of my last email pretty single-mindedly since I wrote it, and I've come to a decision. It's funny, as with most major decisions in my life - it wasn't really conscious. I thought about it, talked about it and wrote about and then, on minute I just knew what I was going to do, even though the moment before I still wasn't sure. Does your mind work that way too?
So, if I'm offered the job I'm staying. I decided that it's too great of an opportunity to pass up and most of my reasons for wanting to leave are things that I have at least some control of. I think I'll go home in April, at the end of this consultancy contract, and then when I come back I'll be in the mindset of staying for a year. I think a big part of my problem was the uncertainty, and feeling like I had a lot of loose ends at home to tie up. I didn't spend the kind of quality time with my friends and family, and just doing the things that I like to do before coming here because I thought I would only be here for three months - a mere 90 days.
When I go home I'm going to go for lots of long walks, get ragingly drunk several times a week, stay up all night gossiping with my friends; I'll hit the Little Gem, Clark's, the Steak n Egg, The Raven and the Big Hunt. I'm going to see lots of movies and spent a small fortune at the bookstore and I think I'll invest in a mat and some yoga dvds - I've never tried it before, maybe I'll like it...
And when I get back to Kabul I'm going to start taking Dari classes, work less at night and try and meet more people. I think the combination of all of these things will help me to maintain a better outlook and perspective on why I'm here. I'm also going to try and take short trips traveling around the region (the winter makes it difficult) but I'd love to spend some time in Lahore, Islamabad, Pashawar, Karachi, Delhi, Almaty, Bishkek... there's so much to see from here and Kabul's a nice central location to work from - okay, maybe not, but it'll do.
The hardest part is putting off my return to Palestine. But, there aren't many jobs there at the moment, and the skills I learn here will only make me more marketable in the future - I'm just postponing that part of my life for a while, hopefully. The second hardest part is accepting that I will probably miss Millerstock this year - sorry guys...
Of course, now I have to write that job proposal and see what the DC office has to say about it... now that I've decided I want to stay I'll be disappointed if it doesn't work out!
I do have to admit that a (small) part of my decision to stay came from hearing so many people tell me to come home...I'm just stubborn like that, I guess.
Finally, I wanted to thank you all for the comments I recieved from both friends and strangers about my last post. Your support and interest mean a lot to me - keep reading and I'll try to put up more pics soon!