Friday, September 3, 2010

Day 4 - Reality Check

This is from the banks of Lac Leman (again, Lake Geneva for all you non-Swiss). So peaceful and so calm, the Alps in the distance shrouded in haze. Today was a beautiful warm day and we went to a small local park in Bournens (the village where I live) this morning and then to the lake shore in the afternoon in Lausanne.  My eyes could not get enough of this sight.

It was nice to sit and stare into the water.  I haven't been here long but in this short time, I'm reevaluating the year set before me.  I really had no idea what I was getting myself into.  This is not bad, I am simply coming to terms with the situation.  I've been telling people for months that this was my plan but somewhere along the line, I stopped thinking about the implications.

I guess I forgot how new everything would be.

For all of my 22 years, I have never been without familiarity. Even when I went away to college, that wasn't very far from home and I was surrounded by things similar.  Here, it is all different. The food, the landscape, the people, the language (big, big difference), everything.  I packed three suitcases full of America but it is not the same.  Even my familiar clothes look different hanging in my new closet. Also, I feel very oddly dressed and out of place, but that's another story entirely. One that potentially ends in me rushing out to the stores for a new wardrobe....

Of course it could be worse. It's not like I'm in the African bush country, drinking goats milk out of an elephant tusk and fighting off lions. But let's get real. I'm a college grad from the Midwest who goes to Chicago for a weekend calls that a grand adventure. I'm totally out of my element here.

But then I sit by the lake and remember that I am not here to feel comfortable, to fit in.  I'm here to try things like ham and sage pork fillet and I might even like it. Which I totally do...pretty much changed the way I view meat. And gâteau a la creme... Ok that is also another story, one that definitely ends in me rushing out for new clothes...
Note to future Swiss travelers: the food = très très BIEN. Also très très rich. I've had a stomach ache for 3 days now....

Anyway, I'm glad for the quiet moments, glad to remember why I'm here. So even though this jet lag seems to never end and even though I will continue to wake up in a cold sweat because I've had a nightmare that I've forgotten all my French AND English and EVEN THOUGH I miss my family like crazy, I will keep on.  There are many more beautiful moments ahead like the one today and I can't wait to experience that.

So bring on the awkward, poorly worded, and uncomfortable situations. It will make for some entertaining stories anyway.

On the plus side, I'm signed up for a French course at the local university. Did you hear that? Yeah, that was the collective sound of Bournen's 250 residents breathing a sigh of relief.


  1. Mom is worried because you were up late, but you know things are normal if she's worrying. We miss you like crazier. I was telling a story with my usual amount of enthusiasm and Spencer says, "Eva, can I tell you something? You sound like an American!" hahaha it was so random, but that's also normal. Love you heaps and bunches and gobs and tons!

  2. Oh my dear. You should have had some culture training with me. Here I was prepared to face all things unfamiliar .... poof, not! The language can definitely make you feel isolated, but I know in time, you will catch on. Love your posts and pictures!! Remember to keep rested! Very important! xoxoxo

  3. Keep these coming. It makes me feel that I am there with you. Thinking of you...

  4. Oh- it's so fun to keep up with you just now! All the best!
    And keep telling us about your journey!


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