Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Running

Today I came across this link and I love it! It describes perfectly what it feels like to always travel to new places, start a new life from scratch every couple of years and the goodbyes. Those are kind of the feelings I'm having now with Iceland. Considering over a year ago I was dead-set on not going abroad during my studies and just be a good student and finish my degree. Well….one night I got bored and looked at the partner universities my home university to offer and I realised: "Yea, screw that plan of not going anywhere."
I've copied the text into here, but I don't own anything, link is below text to the original source. The text in brackets are my own thoughts and comments.

10 Things About Living Abroad: No Turning Back

1. Freedom. A new sense of freedom. Freedom to do and go as I please. Freedom to travel. Freedom to make choices without a safety net. Freedom to be yourself. (True! I've never felt really pressured to stay somewhere because you "have to" because of friends, family, your roots etc. I feel like I can anywhere whenever I please. The downside on this one is unfortunately the feeling of floating in the air and not belonging anywhere, and the the desire to eventually do so.)
2. Watching your life at home pass by. Birthdays come and go. Marriages. Deaths. Life doesn’t stop and wait for you. (Well, I don't have really a "home" but back in Cheeseland everybody slowly starts to get the "real" jobs and have families. Same goes for the Peach State. Life really doesn't wait for you, not even one bit.)
3. Math skills strengthen as you are always trying to convert your local currency to your home country. You know it is even better when you convert your new currency to your previous country. Everything is still in pesos for me. (I've mostly stopped converting € to CHFr., but still do it sometimes in my head. Especially when something seems really cheap or expensive I want to know what it would be in CHFr.)
4. Communication. Responding to someone in any language but the language they are speaking. (And one thing I've learned: Communication is the most important thing!!! Communicate! No matter what it takes! Just do it! Or you'll have some pleasant and not so pleasant encounters, but for the sake of staying alive and avoiding unnecessary misunderstandings: Communicate. Which you should do in your daily life anyway.)
5. Stories. The stories you will have to tell for the rest of your life are so unbelievable most people will think you are exaggerating. Hospitals. Airports. Dentists. You try getting your point across in any means possible. And do I mean ANY means possible. (I give my best in telling those stories and getting my point across but really haven't succeeded yet.)
6. You realize little holidays and moments you didn’t think mattered are the ones that make you the most homesick. (Who would have thought that I'll be missing Gr√ľndonnerstag) 
7. Growth. As much as you hate to admit it with each move you grow. You learn the best ways to pack, meet new friends, get around, and survive. (And you realise it only much later how much you've grown and changed)
8. Adrenaline. Those thrill seekers jumping off canyons and out of airplanes have nothing compared to boarding a plane and traveling to an unknown place. Not knowing anyone. Not knowing your surroundings. Not knowing the language. Now that is a real adrenaline rush. (It's always safer just to stay at home but the thrill you get from leaving your comfort zone is priceless but it includes lots of lost nerves, crying, confusion and calling yourself stupid. But in the end you'll always be alright. :))
9. Patience. Realizing no one understands you. No one cares. Ordering food, getting in a taxi and normal every day tasks take patience. Nothing is ever easy. A 10-minute task at home will take you 60 minutes. Accept it. (I haven't really learned to become more patient in my opinion but you learn just to go with the flow and not stress the small things. And you learn to laugh about yourself and everything else in this world.)
10. Having to say hello for the first time and having to say goodbye for the final time. Not many people get to experience this, but I have perfected it. This could quite possibly be the hardest and most dreaded part of my life. (That is never fun, never pleasant and I always dread it but there's a good quote for this one: “How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.” Winnie-the-Pooh)

And this is why I do all of this! Because I'm a complete moron! :D

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