Sometimes I question myself about whether I am making the wrong decision, leaving the place where I have been living all this time… This place that promised me a life that would be a bed of roses but soon I realised that it was a place that offered more than just roses, it offered me a life full of colours.
An experience that has taught me for good or bad, who I am and what I am capable of. This has been my home, I have learned what goes on in nightclubs after hours, that you can be working 16 hours non-stop and also that hotels prepare their buffet as early as 6am!
This has been an amazing adventure, in which I have learned lots of things, like valuing my own effort, learning more about new cultures or customs and acknowledging the importance of my friends, people that become your family abroad and people that I have shared moments with, and have made unforgettable memories from just mere moments together.
Spending a cold night at home surrounded by friends, singing or just watching a movie, feeling the warmth from them, feeling nostalgic for our homes, families and even our own bed… Sharing sad moments, happiness or tiredness, feeling the empathy after a hard and long day at work, looking at your flatmate and suddenly smiling to each other, thinking about how much you need their complicity, about how happy you are appreciating this human connection among friends who have become your family away from home, are all things that I will dearly miss. And now that the time has come to leave, I think again, ‘Am I making the wrong decision?’ Because every person that has walked into my life during this experience has given me a little story, a little lesson…
An experience that, who knows, could be repeated again one day; however it will never be the same. I am leaving part of me in a city that I initially knew nothing about but now I consider it as my second “home”. The streets, parks or even the shops where I buy my bits and bobs have become my every day and even with less than two weeks left to return to normality, it still hasn’t it hit me that this adventure is about to end!
On the one hand, I’m really looking forward to being home, waking up in my bed and leading a comfortable life, but on the other hand I will miss a life full of uncertainty, a life, in which one week feels like an lifetime! Because changing jobs, house, meeting new people or just living unexpected situations becomes a daily occurrence. This has been a city that has filled my experience with many adventures making me a richer individual. But everything has to end at some point, doesn’t it?
Is this the right moment to leave? Again… Am I making the wrong decision? Most of the people I have met here came to this country with the intention of staying less time than what they actually ended up staying. Yes, we all usually end up extending our stay… expecting new emotions, more adrenaline but always when the moment comes to leave, everything seems to be a lot more attractive, you realise that you are happy here even if you’re working 60 hours per week, or arriving at home so tired that your brain can’t even put a sentence together whilst you’re about to get into bed still wearing your work shirt…
However, one of the things that I thought about the most at the time I was making the difficult decision of leaving was that even after working more than I have ever worked in my entire life, this last year has still felt like as if I were always on holiday. Holidays that asked of me to enjoy the experience as much as possible by making the most of my time off to visit different places, join different kinds of activities around the city allowing me to meet new people every week. This experience has opened my mind so much by experiencing other cultures, tasting other types of traditional food and even changing the way I dress (dare I say) and it was at this point that I asked myself whether it would be possible or realistic to always live like this?
As a matter of a fact, going back home has always been synonymous to “going back to your normal routine”. But lots of things that you expect to be same back home have changed and you might feel “out of place” in some situations. However, I intend to continue feeling like I’m on holidays no matter what, because you are not wrong – when you leave an experience behind, it is because you’re about to live another.
Leaving a place that has given you lots of things in such little time is difficult, but I am looking at things from another perspective because if anything this is what this whole experience has taught me. It has taught me new ways of doing things or if I dare say again that it has even made me a more mature, culturally richer and most importantly, more confident, I am more sure of myself than ever before and for this reason I have decided to go back to my country and still be “on holidays”.
After all, ‘life is like riding a bike, to keep your balance you must keep moving!’