On the Pursuit of Happiness. Part Two.

(November 2016)

The actual beginnings.

My first difficulty came when I arrived to the place I was supposed to live. It was a house I was sharing with the local people living in the town I chose to settle for the start. I couldn’t relate to them at all. Their way of acting, manners and habits seemed to me like from the other world. I am not intolerant, I used to live in different places seeing many different behaviors but there it was so far from everything else, it just left me abashed very often. Their language sounded like anything else I’d heard before. It made me really stressed as I couldn’t even pick up the simplest words from people’s talks. Not to mention going shopping or trying to deal with some formalities. It was frustrating. Every time you go and try to be nice and polite and in exchange you always receive a comment “You live here, you should speak our language”. It would always leave me feeling sad and disappointed. Day by day, however, it started to get better, I took up a language course that also helped dealing with culture shock and slowly the interactions were becoming more and more passable. Still, even if I was trying to utter some of the polite words, I would just encounter a suspicious look from the locals giving me the impression I didn’t belong there.

The other problem I encountered was the fact that I arrived there when winter was in full swing. Believe me, deep in the North winters are much more intensive and they leave much more impact on you than in more moderate climates. It certainly influenced on me in a sense. I came there a bit depressed and the constant darkness, lack of sun, cold and snow just intensified my not-so-positive mood. Just imagine you wake up at 8 in the morning and it is still dark. Ok, quite normal. So you decide to get a little bit more sleep. Then you wake up at 11 and it’s still dark. You wade through huge snow drifts to get to the closest grocery store just to get to know it is closed. As well, you can’t get to the neighbor town because the roads are closed, too. So you just give up and go back home, turn on TV and watch meaningless shows until the weather changes.

The last thing, and probably the most important one, was the fact that I wanted somehow to escape my problems I was struggling for a long time. Sometimes all the bad things come to you at the same time nailing you down on the ground. You start feeling hopeless and there is no sign that it might get better in the future. Consequesntly, you start feeling low and depressed. You desperately look for some way out of that situation. But flying to a faraway place doesn’t necessarily mean the problems will be left behind and won’t trouble you anymore. Well, they will still be there just growing bigger and bigger in your head.

At that time,  I really wanted to forget all the bitter memories I carried in my heart and just enjoy my new life. It worked for a while, after some time, though, the voices from the past started to knock at my door again.

© Lusessita Kingsley 2018


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