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Out of my comfort zone

I just got off the phone with my cousin who I haven’t spoken in two years. The conversation we had reminded me why I left my home-country. And also why we don’t talk much. You see, we have different goals in life.

I’ve been working abroad over the past few years and facing new challenges almost every single day. My cousin never lived outside his village. He keeps telling me to “come home”, “find a job here”, “stay here”.

To be honest, these words don’t warm my heart. I tried so many times to explain to him that the world outside is so much more than stereotypes, monuments and sunny spots.

The world has so much more to offer: home sickness, uncomfortable places and a learning process about who you are.

Through all these years I haven’t found a place where I would make myself a home so instead of chasing it, I’ve started to move around. I decided to live with other people, to share stories, to open myself to new possibilities and realize that I’m not alone. It doesn’t matter where you come from or what defines you: we’re all connected by the same melodramas.

At the end of the phone call, my cousin asks: “If you hate the weather just come back! Stop complaining!”. He doesn’t know this, but: the first reaction you have when living abroad is complaining. It starts inside your head. It can be the weather, the people, the way food smells. Everything counts.



The interesting part comes afterwards: you will realize that you need CHANGE to actually feel something new. It’s like two rocks clashing into each other to create a spark that it will turn into a fire. Friction is important to create struggle. Struggle can be something productive. I’ve had many different kinds of jobs which allowed to have a glimpse of what it’s like to be a waitress, chambermaid, babysitter, sales person, receptionist and home cleaner. During all these experiences I kept focusing on my practical everyday goals: pay rent, buy food, create something or save it for something you want to do. But the most important lesson of all is that you don’t need to prove anything to anyone. You do your thing. You are enough.

I believe that only through being outside of your comfort zone is possible to learn how to be with yourself. To communicate with your thoughts and your heart. How to respect your own conscience and judgment. Above all, to grow. I wouldn’t be the first or the last person to say this statement: “I wouldn’t be the same person if I didn’t do it”.

He hangs up the phone.

——

This essay was part of the World Nomads Travel Writing Scholarship submissions.

The Photography of Peter Hall

Sometimes, if I have the opportunity, I collaborate with photographers as many ways as possible. Meeting Peter was quite overwhelming due to his experience, professionalism and sensitivity. He expresses his point of view through the lens in a unique way, just like a true artist should be. I feel lucky enough to have met him by coincidence and I cannot recommend his work enough. You can visit his website here.

peter_photos

German Speaking Issues

I’ve done a lot of mistakes practicing my German skills. So, I’ve decided to write a stand-up set about it. For those who understand German and also a bit of the popular German culture: I hope you enjoy this video. Thank you.

A scary question

This is not a judgmental point of view about a very sensitive subject. This is a reaction based on current events.

I decided I wanted to share with you a piece of my craziness. Because there are crazy things happening and sometimes my brain doesn’t know how to process them. When Trump was elected, I was stunned as most people were. I was also appalled that Trump was not the first man to be accused of severe crimes such as sexual assault and still roam free without facing any justice or criminal system.

😡😡😡 that is all.

A post shared by Slay (@slaybymic) on

But most of all, we were scared because he won’t be the last man who doesn’t face the consequences. But things are changing thanks to civil rights protests and the voices of the people who are shouting louder and louder reminding bigotry that we are all human. On the streets, online, on the media. We don’t tolerate hate anymore. So with all of this in mind, I had mass confusion in my mind: “why did he win?!”, “what is going to happen?”, “are we safe?”, “how can we stop him from taking away our rights?”.

Well, in the light of such events, here’s what I imagined: I thought that Trump had to travel to Europe for some political reason. During this trip he would also go to Germany and obviously he would meet Angela Merkel. So, this is my question: “What it would happen if Donald Trump “grabbed something” of Merkel?”

Yes. I’m asking what it would happen if Trump made an inappropriate move on one of the most powerful women on Earth. What it would happen?!

I’ve shared this problematic with many people and we always come to the conclusion that it’s terrifying to acknowledge that women have no sufficient protection against aggressors, predators or anyone who uses power to corrupt. I don’t know the answer to this question, but I hope it can provoke something in your mind and make you want to read more about equal rights issues and also to help one another. We need to find solutions so we can solve complex questions like this one.

Thank you for reading this essay.

The way I travel

I get questions about my traveling habits more frequently that I would like to. So I’ve decided to write this post to clarify things (and then to send it to people who ask a lot of questions).

First of all: there are beautiful mornings waiting for you in every corner of every place you visit. That being said, there is also amazing people you can meet. It was in this spirit that I got involved with the Couchsurfing community back in 2011. Since then every time I travel with friends, we always choose couchsurfing first before anything else. We love meeting random people and also discover new places through their knowledge of the city. It’s a unique experience and completely changes how you travel.

But what happens if there’s no host available or all hostels are expensive?! You can always check Airbnb. Read the reviews beforehand and then book any type of room that you would like. Enjoy a pleasant stay in a local home for a more accessible price. Worth it.

That’s basically how I do it. To move around I usually trust planes, trains, buses and Blablacar.

How about you? How do you like to travel?