Finding Out About Death While Abroad

5 Jul

July 3rd seems to be a cursed day. Last year I found out regretfully that a friend of mine had died in a car accident after Independence Day celebrations. One year later, another guy I grew up with died on the same date. Jeff Webber wasn’t necessarily a good friend of mine, but we’d known each other since I was maybe 10 years old, had many classes together, and often worked out together at the gym. Either way, whether you are best friends or hated enemies, when someone you know dies, especially young and so suddenly, it’s shocking and saddening.

I don’t know how he died and neither do the couple of friends that I’ve asked. The lack of communication is aggravating because it goes beyond a daily missing out of inside scoops. This is a big deal and I can’t be there to hear things that hold higher importance. When you’re abroad and someone you know dies, you don’t really know what to do. If you have some friends that can often consolation, it might get you by. But otherwise, you have no real outlet to think about the severity. My friends back home can talk about Jeff and tell old stories, attend the funeral, and close out that chapter.

But here abroad I can’t do any of that, and I have to bottle it up or assume I’ll talk about it someday via Skype or when I eventually go home. Everyone can relate to having a family member, friend, or acquaintance die, but fewer have the experience of not being at home when it happens to relate to. It’s isolating and makes you think of all of the things that you miss. Today was a miserable day and I could barely muster the energy to mutter a few words.

I’m hoping tomorrow will be better.


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