Monday, October 26, 2009

House Guest

I’ve finally had a visitor from home! It was so wonderful to have someone here who has history with me, who really knows me. Our conversations were long and varied. We crammed 6 months of sightseeing highlights into one week-hitting Dubai’s old souk, Burj al Arab (tallest bldg in the world) and Palm Jumeirah, Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi and a desert safari in the oasis of Al Ain.

I loved having someone else in the house. I hope it won’t be the last time I can offer hospitality to friends and family.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Honoring Finn Sisu

Today our Embassy community came together in a very large gathering to honor the life and character of Finn Sisu. We first met outside in the warm morning sun where a tree had been planted in remembrance of him. The Ambassador spoke eloquently of the life that Finn Sisu had led, the many unique experiences he had and the impact his presence had of the lives of those who met him at post. The Ambassador and I placed a bronze plaque at the base of the tree to forever mark this spot in his honor. Finn Sisu would have liked that because he loved trees and things that grow.

After this outdoor ceremony the crowd adjourned to a large conference room where refreshments were available. But the highlight was a PowerPoint presentation that played showing pictures of him throughout his life and music from his own list of iPod songs. It was heartwarming for me to watch the crowd watch the slideshow. They were very quiet, very interested and at certain moments the crowd would emit reactions in unison. A sampling of the songs included was “Ordinary Average Man” by Joe Walsh, “Spirit in the Sky” by Norman Greenbaum, “I’m Gonna Be” by the Proclaimers and “Fat Bottomed Girls” by Queen.

I spoke to everyone who came and many expressed to me not only what a wonderful, happy person he seemed to be when they met him, but that the slideshow really reflected a man who had lived a happy life. They told me they could see that he was always living life and that humor seemed to always be a constant for him. It was. And the joy he brought to my life was immeasurable.

Finn Sisu did exactly as his moniker implies, he lived fearlessly, independently and proactively conscious of what he wanted from life.

I thank all of those who came out to celebrate him and his memory.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Nobody Else in the World

Finn Sisu and I would have celebrated our 17th wedding anniversary last month.  It fell over a 5 day weekend for me, so I took the opportunity to go to Cyprus.  I was originally planning on going with a friend, but they had a family emergency and I went alone.  I knew it would be a bit tough; I knew I would be lonely and I intended to still celebrate the life we shared and to remember him with love.  It was a nice trip, a scary trip and a good rest.

Yesterday I came back from Muscat, where I went on a business trip to meet MEPI contacts in Oman.  It was a much harder trip.  Every step of the way I was thinking of what I would tell Finn Sisu and how much he would have loved this or that, how he would have responded to this situation or another. 

I just don't think that anyone in the world knows how much I miss him or how much it hurts to be without him.