As an expat you make a wide variety of friends & acquaintances in your new country, ones native to the land you live in and then of course other expats. When I moved to The Netherland over 10 yrs ago at first I acquired friends, mostly my husbands old friends & their girlfriends. It didn't take me long to start making my own friends though, some of which I still see. But for the most part my friends were Dutch, and it took me a while to realize that. It wasn't until my daughter came along and I had to start seeking out activities with kids that I started making my own expat friends. At first the relationships seemed ideal, no obligations other than occasional play dates, this fit into my schedule well. But of course when you're seeing someone on a weekly or bi-weekly basis you can't help but get to know them better. And of course a few of these people actually became friends. When they talked about the possibility of leaving The Netherlands because of their husbands jobs it all seemed so far away. I guess I figured I knew what I was getting in to and I was o.k. with temporary friends. But now that a couple have actually left, permanently, off to new adventures, lives, jobs, & countries, it's actually sinking in. The first one that left went fairly easy, I was able to say goodbye, I didn't mention to my tot it was the last time, I just let her enjoy her time with the little boy she had grown so fond of. But this last friend to move has hit a little harder. The way our schedules worked out we didn't even get to say goodbye properly, in person. It's making me question if I can actually handle temporary friends. Part of me knows I have no choice, being an expat and involving your kid in international activities means contact with people that are just temporarily here. It's something I just have to accept. I have to remember the fun we had and be sure to stay in contact, who knows where we'll all end up in the future. So, I guess, it's good bye & good luck, and until the next time.