It’s the leaving season. In the past few days, two of my dearest friends left Luxembourg, and in days to come, two more sweet women, as well as others I’ve been privileged to know, will depart with their families. If they return someday, it will be as tourists, guests, “friends who are visiting,” not as fellow expats navigating this adorable little country. It’s the heart-wrenching leaving season…my least favorite season of all…

My phone has been pinging so often, with questions to a group chat like, “Who needs a hand blender?” or “Mint extract, anyone?” or “I’ve got bottles of toilet cleaner–who wants ’em?” As those departing prepare to return to a country using 110 voltage or a different plug, and their packers have given them lists of forbidden items in the shipping container, they’re desperately clearing their homes while clinging to friendships. You see, living in an unfamiliar country or language or culture is a catalyst for relationships, as piloting through unknown waters together fastens people  in a bond held strong by experiences recounted or fear of the unknown. Butchering the language with someone is so much more enjoyable than floundering alone, d’accord? How comforting it is to laugh about the lack of online registering and the lunch hour closures of government offices when trying to renew that ever-expiring resident card? And then there are the lingering lunches on the terrace…

We don’t forget or replace our friendships “back home.” In fact, many of the people I love spending time with here in Luxembourg remind me of someone in New York. The candor and humor, the laughter and conversation, the compassion and service…I can draw lines to match Luxembourg friends to New York friends (or West Virginia family), regardless of language or nationality or accents or looks. The phrase “having the best of both worlds” takes on a whole, friendly new meaning.


And now,  as expats move back to their home countries or next assignments in order to be settled before the school year begins, friends and family arrive here for visits, a lovely reminder that the longevity of friendship has little to do with location, but much to do with the heart and desire. The leaving season is upon us, and though it tugs at my tear ducts,  a lifelong alliance with the leave-ER is a sweet memento of life in Lux.



13 thoughts on “Seasons in Luxembourg

  1. You had me tearing up😢, and with my meds that isn’t easy! 😂 You have such a wonderful way of saying things Diana. What a great adventure you’re having. I can’t wait to see you in August. Miss you! ❤️❤️😘 Me

    Sent from my iPhone


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  2. You are a real talent, my friend! You must think about publishing some day – or even sooner… 😃

    Love you and would like to just drop by today!

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  3. As usual, beautifully written, dear sister. 😘😍😘😍. Hugs to you & tissues for those tears.

    Get Outlook for iOS

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  4. I say how blessed to have made new friends.. friends that you are emotional about saying goodbye for now.
    You will always hold a piece of them in your heart****as I do you****

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  5. Diana, you are tugging at MY heart strings with this beautiful post, and I am not (nor will ever expect to be) and expat. Life is a journey, but some friends become forever friends. Your infinity symbol is perfect for what words alone fail to express. Thanks for another wonderful “taste” of life in Luxembourg! ❤

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