One morning, during my Erasmus in Switzerland, we took a ride to get to know the places around a little better. I remember thinking Switzerland was beautiful – I still strongly believe that -, and the only thing I had seen was Lugano, that blew my mind away, little did I know the place I was being taken to.
It was my first time actually travelling alone as I went back to Lugano, Switzerland to finish my exchange semester.
I was alone and feeling alone and sad and to help my flight got delayed and I had to sit on the floor of Lisbon airport for about 2 hours with nothing to do!
With a million feelings at a time, and non of them good ones, when the time came to board I was a mess.
I went to Lugano in September for my Erasmus semester. The choice was not well received, since I didn’t speak Italian, the city was seriously expensive and to top everything else, it was said to get REALLY cold in the winter – exactly when I was coming – and it snowed a lot!
As you can imagine, non of this stopped my excitement and I didn’t really care about any of it – I was going to live in Switzerland! What else would matter? Besides, the idea of seeing snow and wake up with the city covered in white appealed to me even more!
While I was living in Switzerland, we went to this place! James Bond Golden Eye 007 JUMP in Verzasca!!
As soon as I looked down to where the “crazy” people where jumping to, my entire body shacked in fear. Yeah, just by looking down….it’s a total fall of 220 meters and one of the scariest things I’ve witnessed!
I had completely different reactions both times I returned home to Portugal.
The first time as I was going home leaving Lisbon Airport I just felt empty. I was just so sad to be back, and that it was already over…Do you know when you feel you’re in the wrong place? Yeah, that’s what I got! All I wanted was to get on the plane again and go back to Switzerland where I considered to have left my home.
Moving to Switzerland was one of the best ideas I ever had! The experience and the things I’ve learned are something I’ll always carry with me. Do you know what the best part was? Feeling Independent!! Even though I depended on my mother financially, I had no one in my house asking me “where are you going”, “where have you been?”. On that matter I was independent as all decisions were mine to take with no interference or comments from others.
Should I feel guilty that I didn’t feel home sick for the longest time while I was living in Switzerland?
Of course I had my days…once or twice I missed home, but not in the sentimental way…I missed Portugal because I realized how everything is cheap here compared to other countries! Yeah! I missed the freedom of just wanting to go for a drink or a coffee near the beach at the maximum price of 1€, compared to Switzerland where we never did that since it would be a waste of money to pay 3€ for a coffee when we could have it at home.
Arriving in Lugano, Switzerland, was like breathing a completely different air, and a chance for me to be a different person, start fresh, do what I wanted with no one telling me what I should or shouldn’t do.
The feeling I got when we got the keys to the apartment was the best I had in a long time, and I felt such freedom and so grown up, like that was the start of something important to me.
Lugano is an amazing but small city, very close to the Italian boarder and so it’s native language is Italian – which was one of the reasons i wanted to come here in the 1st place: to learn Italian!
Now that was one of the scariest things EVER!
Honestly, planes, flying and all those anti natural stuff, are way too much for me to calmly handle!
The day I first flew on a plane was…yep…September 11th!! And me being scared of flying since ever, because of the images stuck in my mind from that morning of 2001, lets admit that experiencing this for the first time in such a date is not the smartest idea I ever had.
A year ago I had this intense feeling of wanting to run away. At that time, like a sign I should go, the Erasmus lists at my University opened for the 2nd time with some openings and I decided: this is it! That same day I had a heart to heart conversation with my other half and I told him I was feeling sad with my studies, being at home and all that, and that I needed to leave for a while and move to a new country for a few months. Then, I asked him a seriously hard question (because I though he would think I was stupid for wanting this):
“will you come with me?”