In The Netherlands, I mostly interact with Dutch people. I barely have Romanian acquaintances, I never attend internationals reunions and I know only a handful of expat stories, most of them discovered due to my work at Paper The Underground. But I’ve learned that an expat’s life has its perks.
You have your world tattered by change and unknown, but you get to have two homes, new experiences and a chance to live on a different pattern. Like a restart. In the previous related post, My Romania and my home, I was saying how amazed I am of the nice events happening back home: Bucharest Jazz Festival, Train Delivery, Street Delivery, Femei pe Matasari. People are finding ways to create and to showcase the creation, to innovate and to be part of something beautiful. That’s why I feel like in vacation in my own country and I really enjoy this trimestrial visits.
- Each time I fly home, my friends and I try to go somewhere in a small trip (seaside, mountains, somewhere we can be in the nature and take photos, laugh and get silly). Even going outside Bucharest, visiting Mogosoaia Palace seems exciting. Bucharest doesn’t have the neatness of other European Capitals, but it has that french neighborhood vibe that grabs you, if you can get your eyes out of your iPhone and the prejudice out of your system.
- Having my friends at 2000 km distance made me want to spend way much more time than fugitive coffees or Saturday nights in a pub. Every time when I meet the girls, even if we speak weekly on Skype or Viber, I see them differently. I see them growing and becoming these beautiful persons, smart and with amazing life stories, that I am proud to be part of.
- I like to spend more time with my parents. Just talking and laughing, having dinner and sharing my dreams with them. Listening to their thoughts, starting to feel their age pressing on. It’s some sort of melancholia creeping in. Some care and love that I have never had when I was living in Bucharest so close to them.
- After one or two weeks in Romania, the other part of me misses the Netherlands. When all the stories are said, all the jokes are worn off, when our alcohol intolerance becomes = to zero, it’s time to pack my stuff and to quench my other ‘dor’, the fact that I miss my boyfriend and the wonderful life that I have started to build here.
It’s a difficult, yet so wonderful way to joggle between places. Now I have two places that I can call home. The place where my family and my friends are, where I have been born and I lived the first 23 years of my life and the place where I see myself growing old, having kids and sailing a boat with D. and our dog.
P.S.: Are you an expat as well? How do you cope with the change and what do you do to ease up your homesickness? Comment below if you have tips or ideas for me and, of course, our fellow expats!