I still remember when I was shopping with my mother and thinking what kind of things I should buy to bring to my new adventure… These thoughts now sound less important than they were in the past. After more or less 5 months of living abroad, my idea of transferring my whole life to a foreign country is completely changed! The weeks before I moved I was so scared because everything was going to be new, fresh and mysterious.
I still remember the day I arrived Poland, I was freaking out and imagining that this was the worst idea I have ever had! I had to start living in a dormitory with people of many different nationalities, cultures and ways of behaving. I had to share a bathroom with more 10 people… “Oh my god, why did I come here??” – I was thinking in the exact same moment I saw my brand new bathroom.
I still remember the first days in Poland, when I met amazing people who made me believe I made the right choice to participate in the Erasmus+ Program. Our friendship started to grow and we started to call each other “family”.
Now, just some days before I am leaving to my lovely country, I am thinking in a completely different way: I am so happy that I lived this memorable experience, something I will always carry in my heart. Amazing people crossed my life in this special period, they became my best friends.
Now, I am a more adult person, I grew since I went out of the comfort of my home, I am happier and it is more difficult for me to get bored! As this was such an incredible giant memory that I can’t afford to describe in just one text, I want to tell you the reasons I think why everyone should live abroad, even if it is just once in our sweet lives:
1 – The value of small things will be much higher – if you already value little things that’s great, however believe me when I say that little things are more than just details, for example, you will value privacy more;
2 – You will learn that material goods are not so important – when you are abroad, things are just stuff that you own, if you don’t have your favorite pillow, there will be another pillow and you won’t notice;
3 – You will meet lovely people who will fill your heart – you will have friends from allover the world and you will always remember those great times that you spent with them;
4 – You have the chance of learning a new language – even if you don’t learn it very well, you will be able to communicate in a new language, for example, Polish is no longer a strange language for me, it is my second home country’s language;
5 – It is the perfect opportunity to learn how to cook – I didn’t cook at all, but now I am very proud to say that I cooked almost everyday of my time abroad. This is really true because you will want to eat your favorite food and you will not find it so easily (for instance, I couldn’t find so easily fish in restaurants so I had to cook it);
6 – Everyday is an adventure – everything in the foreign country is new, every corner of the city, every restaurant, every club, everything… So you are constantly feeling amazed. Sometimes you will probably get lost and discover an impressive landscape, and it will feel even better!
7 – You will have a new city where you will feel at home – whenever I was coming back from a travel to another city or country, the feeling I had coming back to the dormitory was: “It is amazing to feel home again”;
8 – Your capability of solving problems will increase exponentially – when you live abroad and there is a language or culture barrier, you will develop a new skill: “high speed problem solving”. For example, if your flight is deviated to another city or if you are lost with no internet (no google maps either);
9 – Traveling will become a much easier activity – you will develop also the skill of pro-traveler because you will discover all the tricks to get cheaper trips and hostels. Also, packing will become almost an automatic activity;
10 – Finally, you will have amazing stories to tell your friends and family back home – you will never stop speaking about “that time when I was abroad” and how great it was back then, and you will have pictures for a lifetime!
Besides the Portuguese feeling “Saudade”, which consists in the feeling of missing someone, you will have great and irreplaceable memories, you will feel fresh as water when you come back to your country, ready to face life with new eyes!
I hope I inspired you and motivated you to go abroad. Thank you for reading! Wish you all the best! Always remember that life should be lived as full.