“Even just going to the grocery store — when in an exciting new place, when all by yourself, when in a new language — is a thrilling activity. ”
This is so true. Every little thing that I may find mundane or normal back at home becomes magnified and becomes an adventure e.g. meeting up with friends, finding a new shortcut to the bus stop in school, exploring the school’s library. Living with friends has been great; we share the joy and experiences of travelling together but travelling alone, is Gold.
A very dependable feature of people who live abroad is finding them huddled together in bars and restaurants, talking not just about their homelands, but about the experience of leaving. And strangely enough, these groups of ex-pats aren’t necessarily all from the same home countries, often the mere experience of trading lands and cultures is enough to link them together and build the foundations of a friendship. I knew a decent amount of ex pats — of varying lengths of stay — back in America, and it’s reassuring to see that here in Europe, the “foreigner” bars are just as prevalent and filled with the same warm, nostalgic chatter.
But one thing that undoubtedly exists between all of us, something that lingers unspoken at all of our gatherings, is fear. There is a palpable fear to living in a new country, and though it is more acute in the first…
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