Irony of Ingratitude
I guess it’s true: you don’t know what you had until it went. I’ve jigged up the adage a little bit because it’s often true that by the time you realise what you have, it has already become past tense because it’s no longer with you.
Here I sit lamenting about whether I should be here in Cairo or not. It’s been a month exactly and my shell has been cracked, and I wouldn’t say a little. I’m not broken – thanks to God – and I’m not even adding yet to that sentence, ‘cos I don’t plan to be broken, but when you start missing lettuce and clementines (things that were once a staple part of your diet), and loathe the sight of a loaf, that’s something to be worried about.
I know, I know – I’ve got to give it time; it’s only been a month; things could be so much worse. I know, and aside from the lettuce and the clementines, the thing I miss most is human contact. “How so, Londoner? You’re in a city too small for the number of people within it!” Yes, I know that too, nevertheless, it’s one thing to be around people and another thing to be around your people.
No matter how much I Skype, MSN, Facebook or tweet on Twitter, there are some things that the wonders of technology simply cannot give you. It can’t give you the hug you need, or the pecks on the cheek you looked forward to getting; it can’t give you the holding of hands or the twinkle as you gaze into one another’s eyes. Wireless connection may help connect words, smiles and intonation, but it certainly can’t translate that into the human contact of affection.
I guess it’s true, though: you don’t know what you had until it’s four hours away across seas and land. Once had it, and now it’s, well… gone.