Some people have “Bucket Lists.” A list of things they want to do or see before they die, or kick the bucket. On some people’s list is their desire to see Egypt. I admit that I don’t have an actual list. But there are things that I hope I get the opportunity to do or see in my lifetime. Egypt was not one of those things. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to see the Great Pyramid or visit the Tomb of King Tut, it’s just that if I never saw any of those things before I left the Earth, I would be okay.
We received our orders for Egypt and I think our family was one of the few who had received such an exotic assignment. The reactions I would get from friends, family and strangers when they asked where we were moving to was always shock first, then enthusiasm for the adventure they were sure we were going to have. It was encouraging to hear their excitement for us because it eased the doubt that was beginning to seep into my psyche. At times I felt apprehensive about the trip but then someone would say they knew someone who lived there and how much they loved it and that helped reassure me.
My ears perked up whenever anyone had an opinion about Egypt. Whether they lived there, visited, or knew someone who had, it was enough to squelch my nervousness. I began to feel confident about our move and I became almost proud of the assignment. Our family was going to have the unique opportunity to not only see one of the Seven Wonders of the World, we were going to be able to live in a country that some people might only be able to list as a place they’d like to visit in their lifetime.
I began to place my confidence in the admiration of others who saw our assignment as exotic and exciting. I had never met so many people who believed we were “lucky to get such an assignment,” and “what an opportunity we were going to have.” It was on a daily basis that I would casually mention to people where we were moving to just so that I could see their reaction and hopefully hear their longing desire to go some place like Egypt. I would try to insert Egypt into my conversation with friends just so I could talk about the exciting adventure I was about to have. It was a self-seeking attitude that I used to cover the true feelings I didn’t want to acknowledge I was having. I was scared.