It's a bit of a roller coaster ride at the moment, but not the scary kind; rather the wonder-what's-around-the-next-bend kind. I sleep with a notepad and pen on my bed in case I wake up in the middle of the night (and I often do) with thoughts of something that needs more work. My mornings, days, evenings, and nights are crammed full of mental activity, much of which I have no one to share with. My closest friend here is beginning to get tied up in activities of his own, making him less and less available to me. And although I am beginning to build friendships outside of work, I could really use some strong friendships within my work environment as well.
However, culturally, that is just not really allowed. I am white, I am a female, and although my partners value my business contributions, I don't really fit the profile of a PNG executive. So, I am excluded from all but the formal business transactions. When the partying (and networking) starts, I am left behind. And even in casual affairs of business, I am only included if someone thinks it appropriate to invite me; I am never included by default.
Am I complaining? Sure, just a bit. Am I ready to chuck it all and go home? Not at all. I continue to be fascinated by the political, social, and cultural structures that affect my work, and continue to strive to find ways to participate in productive and contributive ways. Nope. Not ready to abandon ship just yet. I still have so much to do.