Home, sweet home!
What does a place need to have, so that you can call it home?
Family? Friends? The feeling of being loved?
Infrastructure? Safety? A stable job? A good educational system?
All of them together?
The answers are really personal and should not be judged.
Living abroad sometimes is seen with glamorization glasses and could not match the reality. Every place has its own advantages and drawbacks. The advice is short but powerful: there is no perfect place, not by its nature at least. You can make (almost) everywhere the ultimate paradise.
Berlin, Seoul, Mumbai, Queensbury or Curitiba, which one is the best?
The best in what sense?
Or maybe the most feared question for experienced traveller: what is the favourite place you have ever been?
Sincerely I have no clue.
Occasionally I feel I belong to the German capital, and I don’t hesitate in saying this: I don’t know a better city to be during the 20’s and 30’s than Berlin. Minutes later a strong idea of returning to my hometown (or moving to another city) flows. What is wrong with me?
Mumbai and Seoul received me with open arms, but they were not a home to me.
Relax my dear Indian and Korean friends, I still love you, even though I was a stranger in your motherland.
I could stay there for years, speak the language fluently and have all the local habits, nevertheless thanks to genetics I would always attract curious looks. In Berlin I am just one more in the crazy crowd.
Back home (did I say “home”?) I have a mixture of feelings. Visiting my family and friends, eating the most delicious things, speaking my native language are comforting, but require some days of adaptation, and I tell you why. If I am talking directly to someone I don’t notice it, although the others around annoy me when speaking Portuguese.
Oh my gosh, there are Brazilians here! I can understand them.
Wait! You are in Brazil, you fool!
This mental process keeps popping in my head for a few days, until I am completely climatized. After that I started noticing I miss some German things: the quick way of paying in a supermarket, the cheap beers, the public transportation, the chill way of handling life.
Has my “home” changed place then?
I would not use the verb “to change”, instead I would rather make use of “to share”.
Some say that sharing is caring, so I want to share my home with all the places (and specially with all the people) that made me love and feel cared of.