My Friend Jeanie

Tuesday 30 August 2011

(Jeanie, I meant to consult you before posting this blog but I didn’t get around to it – hope you don’t mind!)

I met Jeanie when I moved to Grande Prairie in 2008 although it feels like I’ve known her much longer (in a good way.)  We both accepted jobs at Forbes; my 4th year of teaching and Jeanie’s first.  Somewhere in that year, we bonded over teaching, books, movies, drinks, food, and pretty much anything and everything else.

Three quarters of the way through that year at Forbes, I came to Jeanie after Joe and I were presented with the idea of moving overseas and she, of course, was a huge support.  Jeanie has travelled extensively – all over Europe, Thailand, Cuba, USA, etc – and she didn’t hesitate to pack up her life every once in awhile for a new experience.  So, at the end of the year, I took off to Houston, she took off to Thailand for the summer and then returned for her second year of teaching.

As you know, our road to the expat life wasn’t short and after spending several months in Houston, I returned to Grande Prairie and picked up a temporary teaching position while we awaited our destination.  In the meantime, Jeanie had come across an opportunity to teach at a Canadian international school in Singapore.  She asked what I thought and I responded with the same enthusiasm she gave me the year before.  I like to think that I helped her secure the position with a bit of assistance in her resume but really it was her passion and dedication to teaching that is obvious when you meet her.

We laughed as Joe and I had several locations fall through and here was Jeanie, starting a year later than us and she already new where and when she was going.  In the end, Joe and I left Grande Prairie about 2 weeks before Jeanie did off to different continents and surely, different experiences.

Jeanie took off to the ultra modern, ultra clean Singapore and Joe and I landed in third world Africa.  We kept up with each others’ blogs and skyped a few times and reveled at the differences in our experience moving overseas.  Here Jeanie was battling the Singapore transit system and I was faced with Africa and all of its frustrations.  Jeanie had to overcome a bit more homesickness than I did but she also got to do a lot more traveling – Hong Kong, Cambodia, Thailand, Australia, China and Japan just in the past year.

A few weeks ago, Joe let me know that he put in a request to complete a course in Singapore.  I didn’t even budge as he’s done this numerous times throughout the year (albeit, not in Singapore but other locations throughout the world) and nothing was ever approved.  His boss was holding out hoping he could arrange the course in West Africa.  Imagine my surprise and excitement when it was APPROVED!

Immediately, I began daydreaming of catching up with Jeanie.  Shopping, eating, drinking coffees and being able to see first-hand what a move to Asia looks like!

In a little under 2 weeks, Joe and I should be jetting off to Singapore.  Jeanie, I can’t wait to be reunited!  See you soon!

(PS.  Everyone, keep your fingers crossed that airlines don’t close, jobs don’t come up, and nothing else happens forcing us to cancel this trip!)



  1. You will love Singapore. So clean, friendly people and fabulous
    food! And a course reuniting with a good friend. Enjoy!

  2. I'm so excited - it'll be a quick trip but one nonetheless!

  3. So excited to see you Jay! It will be so nice to catch up, can't wait! Your readers can check my blog for the other version of the story.

  4. [...] hear Jay’s side of the story click here. Like this:LikeBe the first to like this post. Leave a Comment Leave a Comment so far Leave a [...]

  5. That is very exciting news!!!! So glad to hear you and Jeanie will be reunited once again:). Congrats!!!!

  6. Thanks Gillian! We head out Friday evening and are already so excited. It's going to be a lot of traveling for a short stay but I'm so excited to see Jeanie! I'm sure we'll be thinking of you when we stop at Starbucks for a coffee and a chat!

  7. Yes - lots of travelling, but you're used to it...LOL! I am so excited for you two and wish I could be there!!!! Enjoy every moment and can't wait to hear all about it:).

  8. I here lots about you, and it was nice to hear your side of my sister :)


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