It was not without tears that I left my second hometown of Wellington, New Zealand. In fact, I spent numerous nights sighing melodramatically over drinks and pinching my hand under the table so I wouldn’t cry and ruin a perfectly nice good-bye dinner with friends.I’ve lived in Wellington before – from November ’06-March ’08 – when I studied things like tomato vs. tomahto at The University of Victoria, Wellington. I lived in a little cottage in Mt. Vic with my then boyfriend, my Wellington bestie and her boyfriend. I came back again this year to the exact same cottage and the exact same flatmates – and it was fantastic.
And really? I spent the last three months doing lovely, wonderful, not-particularly-New Zealandy things. I went to book club and hippie choir. I went out dancing. I spent many, many, many evenings with my flatmates playing guitar hero, drinking wine, solving the world’s problems, dancing ourselves out of bad moods by listening to Ke$ha. After five months of climbing into Thai sex worker lady aquariums, throwing up on trains and not eating maggots, I was thrilled to unpack my bags and hang out with old friends.
And I’m not entirely sure why I’m so sad to leave New Zealand. I’m ready to go home and see my family and American friends. I’m ready for a few new cities and a bit of adventure. I’m (very) ready for the northern hemisphere summer and all the mosquitoes and barbeques that go with it.
But I still had to kiss the corner of that little cottage as I said goodbye and begin stockpiling money to come back next year.
Have you ever lived abroad? How did you feel about going home?
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