I chuckled with some of the others. Of course there's no such thing as an irregular coffee. But is there even such a thing as "regular coffee"? In Boston regular coffee includes cream and sugar. They'll give you black coffee in other parts of the U.S. if you order regular. I'm not sure what the customer in our cafe was picturing when he ordered but I would guess he received an espresso with milk (pictured above). In other words, what's regular is not always easily defined.
When I first conceptualized a culture shock blog I did so in the strict rubric of my "regular" American experience against the "irregular" culture I was constantly interacting with in Croatia. Many posts certainly take that form. But the more I think about it, and the longer I live here, the more I'm convinced that my perspective is not uniquely American nor do the majority of Americans necessarily share my worldview. Therefore, depending on your background, the contents of this blog may not be the regular coffee you thought you were getting when you first arrived.
For example, when I discuss learning a foreign language, especially Croatian, most Americans won't be hanging to my every word. When I write about finding the cross, I may only find an audience made up of those concerned about following the One who made it significant. My eating habits, my driving experiences and my opinions are all things the typical American may not identify with - even if they were planning on coming to Croatia or are already here - because we come from different viewpoints. And the posts written from my kids' perspective will only be interesting if you have one of two last names.
Obviously, there are a lot of reasons I blog. But I'm finding that I'm primarily interested in tracking how my (sometimes irregular) experiences change me. What do I learn from my children? How do those closest to me influence my life? Does the faith that I grew up with develop? How? In what ways does the culture I live in shape my values? Those are some of the questions I'm concerned with.
They aren't unusual questions. They are prompts many of us pause to think about no matter where we live, what we believe or what we do. They provide a normal context for thought. They are part of an ongoing conversation to which others greatly contribute.
So as time moves on, this blog will inevitably change. The posts are already becoming less "American in Croatia" and more "this is what I experienced/learned today". They aren't regular or irregular. Life, as it turns out, is a little grayer than that. The stories are what bring color to our lives. They've been the part of this blog I enjoy the most. And I hope to share more of them in the future.
So if you've been around here for awhile, thanks for reading. If you're new, take a browse through past posts. Regardless of how long you've been here, grab a coffee and feel free to share your thoughts. Whether they're regular, irregular, or somewhere in between, they are always welcome.