A life time adventure
Have you ever thought about moving abroad? If yes, then you must have thought about how cool study abroad programs are. You can kind of ‘try out’ a country for a semester without worrying about any consequences that would come in case of a regular moving.
4 years ago I came across a flyer I saw on a bulletin board at my university. They offered 5 months with a reasonable monthly financial aid at a German university, in Baden-Württemberg. As a kid I was often told by my grandparents that we have Svabian roots and Germany seemed a cool place to try out anyway, so I applied and a half year later I was on the plane to Frankfurt, anxious but still excited about the new chapter of my life.
Looking back at that time I had no reason to be afraid. The local university’s International Office took care of literally everything, I had a nice dorm room prepared, they helped us with opening a local bank account and getting registered at the Town Hall. I’d had friends before taking off from Budapest because they opened a FB group so we could get to know each other before meeting face to face.
I can’t even say how much joy, adventure and knowledge I’ve gained during my stay in Mannheim. I met wonderful people from all around the world, I got to know their culture and values. I was lucky to travel with these great people from Switzlerand to the Netherlands, from France to the Czech Republic. Numerous trips and programs were organized by the school itself so it was guaranteed that we did not feel lonely or bored at all.
I must say that one who hasn’t lived abroad for an extended period of time doesn’t know what it truly means to be apart from your homeland. Though home sickness can be awful sometimes, you learn something new every single day (or minute, actually). You learn words, habits, superstitions, get to know people, cultures, stories. In one world: you enjoy your life.
Coming back home was a great feeling of course – nothing compares to meeting and hugging your loved ones, but there’s also a sad feeling that stays with you because ‘You will never be completely home again. Part of your heart will always be elsewhere. That’s the price you pay for the richness of knowing and loving people in more than one place.’