It’s Neat Having International Friends

O’Hara’s Downtown in Jersey City. One of the last photos taken on my Patch-issued iPhone, before they remembered I stopped working there on Friday and shut it down.

Matt, far left, has been one of my closest friends since 1994. And, for something like 8 years, he has taught in Myanmar, Taiwan and, most recently, The Congo. That first and third one are particularly noteworthy, considering the isolation and unknown nature of them. I think it’s pretty inspiring, especially since I am now less than one week away from my return to South Korea.

Matt passed through last night on his way to one of the biggest international job fairs in the world, in Boston. We spent the evening with one of our other mutual best friends, Padnes (not pictured. That dude between Matt and I is Matt’s brother, whom I noticed grabbing a beer at the Barcade, despite not having seen him since high school. Matt and Padnes didn’t notice him until I pointed him out. Which is kind of funny considering the resemblance. To Matt, not me), in Jersey City drinking beers neither of us will likely get to enjoy once he returns to The Congo in a few days and I get to Busan.

So, his international adventure is not yet over. At this point, with administrative certifications and years of experience, I guess this is kind of his career now. I am certainly more interested in taking Part III one day at a time, especially getting through the rough transition period. But, I cannot help but feel a deep allure in that kind of lifestyle. I am sure there is plenty of glamour to its unknown, its mystery, that would surely dissipate over time. But, who knows?

That I can even have this kind of conversation with myself I consider a great honor. I also consider it a great honor to have such interesting and inspiring people in my life. I will try and keep such privilege and inspiration in perspective.


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