Settlers of Catan

Between Christmas and New Years, we all sat around a wooden table in Edmonton and tried to figure out the rules for the game which has pulled more families apart than any other game. Settlers of Catan (Siedler von Catan) is a tactical game to win as many resources as possible and to build as much as you can. At first, it seems economical. You buy and build. Soon, you will encounter political actions, not even remotly driven by economical thinking. No one trades with a traitor, no one is helping a winner. As I sat there, I realized that our next year will have a lot to do with planning our resources, and how we will play that hand.

Our intentions to move away for a year were purely economical: We put our time in and take a great experience out. The negative side effects of leaving your family and friends is something we accepted by trying to see the bigger the picture.

Moving itself is nothing but planning what you can and prepare for things you can’t plan. And once you have arrived, you will start settleing in. You direct your resources towards the goals you set or the way you want to live your life. And all of a sudden, you are holding the imaginary trading cards of life, ready to play them one by one. Trying to find a gym, grocery store, pub, shoe store, place to get passport pictures taken and so on.

One of the biggest similiarties with Settlers of Catan is that there is no friendship card. Even if you have all the resources right, it doesn’t help if you can’t trade them. And again, like in Singapore, I am suprised how much you miss small things. And the older you get, the more you are wishing things would’t change, and some one would finally give you that card of wood, so you could build you own house…