The WiseCat

Tina Lamsback

Dear WiseCat,

A couple of my friends are studying abroad in various locations this semester. Over this spring break, I traveled to Europe where they are studying but was unable to meet up with them. Apparently, they are upset with me because we did not meet up. How do I make this better?


Jet Lagged

Dear Jet Lagged,

Click! Click! Click! Go get the ruby red slippers of Dorothy from “The Wizard of Oz.” “Take me back to Kansas,” she says. Do you recall when Dorothy missed home? I’m sure almost everyone was able to catch that movie at some point in his or her childhood. Click! Click! Click! There went the red shoes. You felt for her. You wanted her to see her family and be a part of reality just one more time.

When any person goes away for an extended period of time – whether it is for a couple of weeks, months or even years – people tend to miss the everyday grind. The conversations, the late-night drama or simply a text asking, “How was your day?” – those aspects are what define home for people.

But, what else is there? Home is also based on the people who are there for you. Let’s face it, you probably wouldn’t call somewhere home if there weren’t people there to make you laugh or to give you a hug when you are sad.

Imagine a day where you’re on your own, placed somewhere with people that you only kind of know. That daily routine is lost. You’re with Villanova students – if that – but you’re not with your best friends. You’re not waking up to meet friends at the IK for lunch or taking a last-minute shopping trip for those must-have shoes with your best friend. Instead, you’re taking tours to places that, up to this point, you have only seen pictures of in books. You’re living life to it’s fullest potential. You’re making it on your own – a true journey of becoming an adult. Some might even say studying abroad was a life-changing experience.

With that being said, your friends just wanted to show you what they learned. I believe that it’s a compliment for someone to be upset because you were unable to visit. Clearly, they value your friendship and wanted to welcome you to their new home. They want you to be a part of something they have achieved, something they think is so wonderful.

So, here is the solution: send an e-mail or care package of things that are memorable to you and your friends – maybe a collage of some pictures or a quick e-mail update that would make them laugh. Bring the focus back to the core of friendship. Because let’s face it, Dorothy was right – “There is no place like home.”