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26      The Grass is Always Greener on the other Side of the Fence

  It means things you do not have always look better than those you have.

A friend of mine broke the news just the other day that she was packing up to leave the country and heading back home. After years living here. Of course, a typical question would be why? Had she not had adjusted her life here? Had she not found her comfort here? Had she not enjoyed living here? After all, it is the United States of America.

It might sound a little too cliché when you hear someone living in the US of A and all you can think of, the person must have the best time in his life. Not quite true. For instance, based on the answer my friend gave me, she had not been happy here. And apparently, when you have been unhappy for a while living somewhere, you pack your bag and move elsewhere. Because the grass is always greener.

How about when another friend of mine told me on one fine day that she had been dating, again? It should have been a fantastic news, but it was not. The fact is that she had been married. Single-but-looking is so passé. Attached-but-looking seems like the latest scene in town. Could it be due to the grass again?

For someone who had been with a company for such a long period of time, it was quite a news when he told me that he had quit his job just the other week and decided to work somehere else. But, you had such an excellent work environment, a comfortable position, a perfect location! — I cried out with an exclamation mark. Because that something on the other side of the fence seemed greener.

Most of us have experienced these, one if not all. A new job, new apartment, new friends, new people, even a new life. It is quite a change. Everyone seems to agree on ‘Change is Good’ line. The fact of the matter is if we are discontent with anything in our life, we tend to look at the other side of the fence. Hey, it looks greener. Let’s go and take a look! Better still, move there. But, wait a minute! How about a time to redefine and be content with what you have? How about if we just sit down and relax? Perhaps everything can be clear and actually be greener on our own side?

The grass often appears greener on the other side of the fence, but think again, is it really?

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Be glad of life, because it gives you the chance to love and to work and to play and to look up at the stars; to be satisfied with your possessions; to despise nothing in the world except falsehood and meanness, and to fear nothing except cowardice; to be governed by your admirations rather than by your disgusts; to covet nothing that is your neighbor’s except his kindness of heart and gentleness of manners; to think seldom of your enemies, often of your friends... and to spend as much time as you can, with body and with spirit. (Henry Van Dyke)