At work, we are always thinking about the ‘Why’ – why are we doing what we are doing? Why do we build the products that we do? You might know the ‘what’ and the ‘how’, but the why is not always so obvious.
I’ve played around with websites in the past, and more recently had the urge to ‘blog’, but before doing a blog, or a website, or pretty much anything in life, I figure its a good idea to step back to ask myself WHY? Why do I want to do a blog? Well, my understanding of blogs is that they offer a way for the blogger to share knowledge, experiences, events, thoughts, even products – and I’ve always felt pretty lucky with the lifestyle I lead, so maybe I have some knowledge and experiences that others might be interested in. Therefore my blogging ‘why’ is a desire to share and perhaps inspire, and hope that is matched by a few people out there in digital land, who may also have a desire to read about my experiences!
So, here we go, its Friday lunch time, which means its weekend here in Dubai, as the working week is from Sunday – Thursday. The week ahead is one of those that I am hoping will go past very quickly, as we have 2 weeks holiday to look forward to from next weekend, and I can’t wait! Being based in Dubai at this time of year can be really challenging, as the weather gets extremely hot, at least for a Englishman – temperatures are constantly in the 40’s, which makes being outside quite uncomfortable.
However, even as I write this I feel a ‘wuss’ moaning about the temperatures, because just across from our apartment, there is an army of ‘labourers’ building another of Dubai’s glass towers, working in conditions that I could not cope with for ten minutes, but they are there day after day – that is real ‘hard work’.
So, opportunities to ‘escape’ are welcome, and our opportunity comes in the form of a twin venue holiday, taking in the 2 overseas properties that we have invested in during the past few years.
We start with our newest project, a wonderful property located in Gabiano, in Northern Italy, which we call ‘The Greenhouse’ – we bought it with a good friend of ours; it was what we Brits would call a ‘Fixer Upper’. Now, after some 2 years of intense fixing uping, it’s a gorgeous house, located in an extremely peaceful and relaxing part of the world, where excellent Italian food and wine take centre stage.
Then after copious amounts of countryside, wine and pasta, we travel on to the place that is probably the closest to a ‘permanent’ home that we have – our apartment in Peyia, Cyprus.
Just to go off topic for a moment if I may, something that fascinates me as an airline person, is that the flight we are taking between Italy (Milan) and Cyprus (Larnaca) is on UK airline Easyjet, oh how the industry has changed over the 40+ years that I have been a part of it!
But back to Peyia – a different type of location from Gabiano; although Peyia itself is a relatively quiet place, it is only a short drive from the tourism hustle and bustle of Paphos and Coral Bay. We always enjoy our visits to Cyprus, although they are far too infrequent, but this one will be extra special as we have been invited to the wedding of some good friends of ours whilst we are there, something we are really looking forward to.
So, back to the initial subject of my blog – in many ways, this holiday emphasises the ‘Why’ for me – why do we work, and live the way we live? Being an Expat definitely has its pluses; I’ve lived in, and visited places that I’ve felt very privileged to be part of, and met some fantastic people that I am lucky enough to consider friends, but there are some definite drawbacks, the far too infrequent opportunities to spend time with family and old friends, and the challenges of moving home, even continents, every few years.
Therefore, this holiday is a chance to relax, but also to take stock, and think how lucky we are to have what we have, and experience what we do. In a world that seems to be becoming increasingly volatile, something my parents used to say comes to mind, ‘count your blessings’ – well I will certainly be doing that during the holiday, and when I return after the 2 weeks, and I have those post-holiday blues on that first Sunday back to work, the Why will be clearer than ever.