I am now 7 years in HK (as of earlier this week). I came for one, maybe two. Seven years, one child and 3 jobs later I am still here. Oh, and I've got a mortgage too. Eve goes off to pre-school next month, I have a fair few good Chinese friends (always the sign you have assimilated a bit rather than just lived in an expat ivory tower). I love the speed and messiness and organic way in which HK develops. It has everything I like about life - good food, easy rowing, great weather, designer shows. It's been very good to me, I have a great job, a fantastic nanny (which enables me to enjoy the great job) and a wonderful bunch of friends. In all practical ways, HK in home. I always thought of relationship permanence could be measured in terms of how easily one could walk away. If that was the case with HK, we would be married and the divorce would be messy.
Which is why, after 7 years of being HK's biggest fan, I am finally starting to think about whether this is long term or not. Of course this comes after a wonderful trip home. The UK was at its best. Lovely weather, we stayed for half the week on the Cotswalds, including where I was at Uni and we got married. The other half was with my sister, who I love dearly and miss horribly. I am very close to my family, so being with them is a treat. Now all the little ones are getting bigger, it is such fun to be with them and they love being together. When we got home Eve's favourite game was getting on a plane to see E and J (my sister's kids).
But still, all good things come to an end and I am starting to wonder whether this may be nearing it too.
Then again, after a sunny weekend of rowing with my new rowing buddy C, playing on the beach with Eve, sitting on my balcony with a glass of wine and a book listening to the cicadas (as I am now) and the sheer convenience of everything here I will most likely change my mind.
The multiplication of Kevin
4 weeks ago