Ellen Lessard

Al Ain, United Arab Emirates

Working as a kindergarten teacher in Yahar, UAE for 3 year has offered a great deal of richness and depth to my life, love and work experience. It's not my first time living in this part of the world. From 1988-1990 I lived in Yemen as a Peace Corps volunteer. My love of this part of the world has tinted my view of life. I'm here long enough not to be in the "honeymoon" phase. And the greatest gift of this experience is sharing it with my husband, Jim Lessard. There is a lot that can be said about living in the Middle East. The main thing I love about living here is the easy-going rhythm of life and the attitude of in-sha-allah: "God-willing". Although aggravating to some, the mere disregard of time as the underlying driver of life, charms me and touches something in me that runs deep. A friend of mine one time said to me, "Why do you like Arabia?" I thought for a minute and he said, "It's another world view." And I had to say, "Yes, that's it. It's another world view."