We Four in Egypt

Now back in the US!

What I don’t miss (11/14)

  • Ironing (not that I did that much of it before… but I should have)
  • Working longer hours
  • Not being able to afford vacations
  • Only a couple of weeks a year for vacations
  • Stressing over childcare arrangements
  • WalMart culture
  • Needing a car to do anything
  • Answering machines
  • The money suck that is living in the US

14 November 2008 - Posted by | our life in egypt


  1. It’s odd about the money suck – we noticed it when we lived in the STates but it seemed so necessary. Now we don’t spend nearly as much money on consumer goods and have more to spend on travel and things like that. 🙂

    Comment by Typ0 | 14 November 2008

  2. Same thing.

    When we returned from France from the States, it almost felt like a relief to have escaped from the ‘money suck’ culture. It’s an odd thing because it makes American life so comfortable and yet so oddly uncomfortable at the same time. I guess as you buy things you feel as though you are satisfying a need but, really, you are just reinforcing the need.

    I’m really interested about how salaries/spending power balances out in the different countries…because I’m beginning to wonder if it all doesn’t just equal out in the end (for the similar western countries). That is, an extra penny earned is also just an extra penny spent…and that the comfort brought in spending it doesn’t equally create an anxiety about how to spend the next penny? In France, we don’t really earn enough to have too many extra pennies.. but, then, that’s another whole problem that doesn’t look like it’ll get better any time soon!!

    hugs to you Ms Four and your family,

    Comment by Robyn | 15 November 2008

  3. Thanks, Robyn, for the nice note!

    What is about the US? I guess it’s the consumer culture. It’s interesting to me that you two women, both non-American, fall into the same trap when in the US but not in your home countries or other places.

    I really noticed this when I moved from College Town to the mountains after I graduated. Except for various kayaking toys, there wasn’t much to buy in the mountains. But I noticed when I went back to town, I felt like I needed new shoes or something.

    Comment by Ms. Four | 16 November 2008

  4. Maybe having lived in Egypt will help you resist the money suck when you’re back in the States. I lived in Kenya for a year when I was 18, and got used to having no access to phone, car, tv, washer/dryer, malls, supermarkets, plastic bags, etc. I only really missed some particular foods. It was good to realize how well one could live without all that stuff–and how many people in the world do so.

    On my return, on the way home from the airport, I saw a billboard that said, “Chevy Chevette: Take two, they’re small!” It was ludicrous.

    Granted, I have never liked to shop, and I don’t like clutter in my house. But here I am, all these years later, having spent most of my adult life without a car, a tv, washer/dryer, a home computer, etc. I still resist shopping at the mall and the supermarket. I have a cell phone that makes people laugh because it’s so old (four years! Several generations in tech time.) It would surely be harder to resist all this if I had kids, but it is possible.

    Comment by Monica | 17 November 2008

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