This week, March 28, I was able to meet up with Nasser. As we talked, Nasser told me that he had a really rough day this week, dealing with his struggles to adjust to the lifestyle of Texas and America. After a day of going back and forth about how to manage his adjustments, Nasser decided that he is going to transfer out of TCU, vacation in Europe this summer, and attend a university in London.
It seemed to me that he was very happy about this choice, and that leaving TCU would result in more happiness and enjoyment for Nasser. He hasn't told anyone else the news yet, but he thinks his parents will be excited to hear about his new decision. He did admit that he will be very sad to leave his sister, who also lives in Fort Worth and attends the ESL classes with him. He loves watching his niece and nephew and will miss them a lot, but he thinks it is the best choice for him at this point in his life.
He explained to me that it is very difficult for him to live in Texas, or America in general, because he feels like an outsider. Coming from Saudi Arabia, he is used to being surrounded by people who share his same beliefs, ideals, and family-oriented lifestyle. While at TCU, Nasser has felt that he doesn’t have many opportunities to connect with his own people and that he would be better suited in London, where many of Saudi Arabians attend university. Additionally, he explained to me that he doesn’t like the lifestyle in Texas in regards to “everything being big.” He thinks we as Americans are too caught up in material things, etc. and that we don’t have the ideals that he cherishes at home. He is excited to live in London, and experience the "big city" lifestyle. He enjoys exploring big cities that are easily explored on foot, as opposed to Texas where everything is spread so far apart.
Nasser was worried that he offended me by telling me that he doesn’t like our lifestyle, but I assured him I understood and that I was glad he was making a choice to make himself more comfortable. Now that he has made the big decision, he is eager for summer to come so he can move on to a new chapter of his life.
Nasser and I also talked about the books that he is required to read for his English classes at TCU. I found it rather humorous how much Nasser hates the books he was required to read, such as Hunger Games. He couldn’t believe that we, especially as young people, would enjoy a book discussing young children fighting to the death because they were picked in a drawing.
Yes, I do understand the ridiculousness of the concept of the series, but I absolutely loved the series. Nasser brought a book in that he was reading for leisure; he was reading a philosophy book written by a German writer and explained how he really enjoys reading about philosophy and topics relating to the meaning of life, etc. I was rather impressed because he was reading this deeply intellectual book in English. It is obvious that he has obtained a good grasp and understand about the English language in his ESL classes.
until our next laugh,