Living abroad are never only awesome days and sparkling nights. There are challenges to it all the time, even if the overall experience is fantastic and even if I tend to forget those challenges afterwards. I like to save the space in my mind for beautiful memories.
Challenges I had living elsewhere:
Turkey (somewhere in the Western countryside): I’m considered a slut. Because all German girls are apparently sluts, they love to have sex with Turkish men. Having a beer equals an engagement, consequently having a beer with another man equals a dirty betrayal.
Poland (Krakow/Warszawa): I meet plenty of negative stereotypes about Germany and German politics. Parents of my students are sceptical. I experience hate towards me.
Japan (Kanazawa, West Coast): People need to be drunk to speak their minds freely and won’t have a discussion with me (for cultural reasons). Oh yes, and that break-up on the other side of the world wasn’t so much fun, either.
Taiwan (Taipei): I’m an alien, so different. The weather is weird. I don’t have an oven. Home is really far away, especially for Christmas.
Macedonia (Skopje): People get upset really quick if I speak my mind too freely. I must learn how to sugarcoat my messages without censoring myself.
Challenges I have in France:
I get catcalled all the time. They don’t sell my toothpaste in the supermarket, Cewe Color has not spread to this part of Europe (I can’t fastprint photos for my photo album) and the tampons are really weird.
Can somebody please explain me why I am upset? !
That was a rhetorical question. I guess, my point is: you never know before whether or not you’ll be fine somewhere. And objective reasons don’t matter for your well-being. Sometimes it just seems much easier to find friends with an oven to celebrate Christmas with than to adapt to different hygiene products… It all depends on the situation.