Sunday, January 22, 2012

I love you Bangladesh!

It is often that I hope to see a familiar face show up on our doorstep from our group of family and friends "back home". Not just because we miss them do we want to see them, but to share a little bit of the amazing experience of seeing Bangladesh. I would love to be their tour guide, to show them the place and people we've learned to know over these past 15 months.
Me too!
But would they see it as beautiful and wonderful, as I now do, or would they rather just "stay in, watch a movie and have a pizza" because the reality of the stunning difference between Dhaka and their familiar USA? I would hope the former, but it can be a lot to digest. Honestly, it was not complete love at first sight for me either...well, it was, but the love was brief. The earth shaking way I felt newly pregnant upon arriving to Dhaka quickly sent me in a tailspin. Within 2 weeks of arriving, I felt like death, and did not peak my head from the apartment, much less the covers, for what seemed weeks.

Upon returning from baby leave in August, life here seems all that much more wonderful. Maybe it's a happy 4 year old, an unbelievably adorable (I'm a bit partial) baby or a husband I'm still insanely in love with (sorry, are you gagging yet, sorry) which make me happy. I'm sure I'd just be happy anywhere as long we are all together. Maybe it's the warm climate and tropical flora. Maybe it's the staff that work in our home, love us and have become a true part of our lives and family. Truly I believe I'm completely smitten with Bangladesh. It is raw and unfiltered, but the exoticness, beauty, amazingly friendly people and slowness of life here have me captivated.

Lately, I've been a "go to girl" at the embassy for new people's questions: where to (frame art, buy xyz, do henna, etc) information, best bakery advice, how to hire staff, etc. It feels nice, and I thoroughly enjoy the interaction. Maybe it's because people can tell that we genuinely enjoy life here, be it because of where we are or who we are. And maybe it's just because we aren't the newbies anymore, but are becoming one of the "older families".  I hope it keeps happening, and I hope that the people we talk to fall as in love with life here as we have. I hope more people will see the Bangladesh in front of their eyes, which is exhilarating and vibrant, colorful and beautiful, hospitable and hard working. I hope many love it here and portray to Bangladesh what wonderful people Americans are.

This is what we expats that live here signed up for. We can walk away at anytime, but most choose whole heartedly not to. And when we do leave, which I am starting to dread, none shall walk away the same as when we arrived. This place and its people have carved too deep a mark on me, and I'll miss it dearly.

I love you Bangladesh!


  1. Hello Denise,

    I actually would like to contact you via email. However, I don't see your email address here. Would you please send me an email to and I will send you my questions there! I do want to join DAWC (currently I am in Dhaka for long term). Though my qs to you aren't related to DAWC rather on activities and sort for a baby that are available in DHK.
    Noorjahan :)

  2. Lovely, lovely post!