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Three Days to The Beginning

Five and Ten Months

GERMANY | Saturday, 7 June 2014 | Views [428]

I have now been living abroad for almost five months and though I still have just over ten months left here, I already cannot imagine how I will handle going back. I don't want to go back. Since moving to Germany I have found myself a much more confident and independent person. I have had to become that in order to meet people and enjoy life here. I live in a very small town that has a total of about fifteen to twenty people so meeting people was something of a challenge for me at the start seeing as I didn't speak the language, but (without the help of a language course) I have been learning the language through everyday context and use which has opened me up to meeting all kinds of people from all over the planet. I think we tend to forget that, that we are all part of one planet. We are raised to see the world as a broken sphere of separate powers, but really we are one people. If traveling teaches you nothing else, it teaches you that. I now have friends from England, Italy, Spain, Ecuador, Columbia, Germany, Australia, New Zealand, Namibia....A whole world of people that has come together in incredible ways. All with new perspectives and ideas and all eager to LEARN. That is the main desire. They crave the ability to UNDERSTAND the world around them and everyone in it. I can sit down to beer and coffee at a café in Heilbronn and discuss politics, religion, and culture with people from Bosnia, Italy, Serbia, and Nepal, and then turn around and gossip about our relationships with the same people who are having the same problems in trying to maintain a long distance relationship. It is incredible to live in such a global environment and it is incredible in a completely different sense to see the strain international political policy places on each of these people as well. The idea that a person can come from one country and be welcomed with open arms while a person with the same, sometimes better qualifications from another has to jump through one hoop after another in order to just get into the country, let alone find work, is terrifying. We are a world of cowards. That is what drives our lives and our policies. While yes, there are genuine threats in the world, there always will be, it seems like a detrimental decision to raise our people to live in fear of what might go wrong instead of with the courage to fight for the things that could go right. Meeting these people and living in this place I have come to recognize even more that my own country is filled with so many people who are content to turn a blind eye to the world around them. The 'world around them' doesn't exist. We are the definition of the 'us and them' discussion. There are too many people content to see the world through a blood spattered, rose tented lens and since moving here I don't know how I will be able to go back to living surrounded by these people without fighting to open their eyes. There have been many people from home who have discussed coming to visit me and I have told them all the same thing: please come. Please come, so that I can show you the damage left on this country by the war we see as their fault. Please come, so that I can show you the people who feel responsible for their country's past. Please come, so that I can take you to the hub where street artist after street artist sings words they may not understand with a soul that shows you their pain. Or the ones who draw so brilliantly in a medium that will soon be forever washed away. Come so I can show you the people I have met who came here questioning if it was safe to live without fences and using public transportation because back home that would surely have lead to their rape, assault, or death. Please. Come. So I can show you another way of life, another view of OUR world. I have been living abroad almost five months now and though I still have just over ten months left here, I already cannot imagine how I will handle going back. I don't want to go back. And in some ways, I never will.

Tags: fear, germany, global, learn, living abroad, planet, politics

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