Is love so important while living abroad? Making an experience far from home is exciting and intensive at the same time. Every day is unique, there is always something new, obstacles that need to be faced, adventures that wait to be lived. Some days you feel you can change the world, some others you just would like to escape, abandoning everything you were doing before, even if you were just buying the bread at the supermarket. Those days, especially after the first adrenaline period abroad, are difficult to manage, really. I’m also still full of doubts about my present and my future, that’s why I feel so lucky to be sharing my Berliner life with someone special, my boyfriend, my love, my fellow. I mean, I could have done it alone for sure, but, how long would I have resisted here, with only my motivation and strength? Maybe a couple of months, perhaps one year or ten.
I don’t know, but living the life with my partner, especially because we are not here just for a short experience abroad, it’s a plus for which I thank every day. Our lives are, of course, more intensive than before: when you live at home, you can’t notice some aspects that come out once you leave. Going to the doctor, for example, has been always easy to do: you go to the clinic, explain the symptoms, listen to the suggestions, buy the medicines at the pharmacy, and go back home. Easy, but here it’s a bit different: before to go to the Doctor, we sit together, we write down and translate the keywords of our “illnesses”, we build sentences and try to talk explaining what’s wrong and asking for more details.
With a good dose of improvisation and the right attention, it’s possible anyway to communicate. What happens then? The confrontation between our different sensations and understandings after the visit, a clash of cultures: “He said you should stay at home for a while, it can be a virus!“. “Not at all, he said he excludes a virus and I can go work!“. Well, at this point of the conversation, you can easily imagine what happens. The talk degenerates typically towards other topics:
- You should go to school to learn the language
- Easy for you, you work with Germans!
- This is why you should go to school
- But I’m too tired the evening after work
- Well, you should go anyway, make an effort, it won’t be forever
- I feel too old for the school
- Well, we can learn it using other instruments, watching films, reading books or articles, listening to German songs…
- Mmmh, ok, let’s see tomorrow.
Guess who is the procrastinator? Exactly! We never agree on those points, but we try to cooperate. At least, I do my best to interface with everyday situations. I’m the referee of the property of our flat, I take care of all the bills (Internet, TV, taxes, electricity and so on), I’m the conjunction with the janitor of our building, I translate important documents and also call the restaurant to order the pizza. Lots of things, yes. I’m improving my German at full speed, I feel stronger and more secure, in two years I made huge progress. And I’m so proud, really.
But sometimes I would just like to relax, and this is a good reason for conflicts in a couple, especially when one of the two, feels to have too many responsibilities and the other doesn’t have the control he/she would like to have. In any case, going back home after a long day spent in office, and finding him there waiting for me, it’s always a relief, I’m protected from the rest of the world, and I can be myself, speaking Italian (sometimes also our dialects, Sardinian and Catalan of Alghero), and being fluent expressing my thoughts without the fear to be judged for a bad pronunciation.
After dinner, sitting on the couch, we dream often about our future projects: there’s only one common point that links us very well, the desire, one day, to go back home, to rejoin our families and to live a more simple life, far from the traffic, far from the stress, far from the feeling to be guests in the country we live in. It’s not the right moment to make plans, we still have plenty of time to dream and imagine how it will be. Now we enjoy our life abroad, trying to make the best experience, hoping to come back here as tourists, one day.