It is that time of the year again, when this expat Finn, is cursing too expensive flight tickets to Finland! Sometimes it feels, like you are being punished, for living abroad and wanting to visit home.When I looked the ticket prices and the offers,for outbound flights from Finland,they were so cheap. Not fair. In the end, I managed to find reasonably priced tickets, for me and the Hubby. Kiddo’s ticket costed same as ours together. He is flying ahead of us, as UM (unattended minor),second time and looking forward it already.So proud to be able to fly alone. His grandparents are also very happy to be able to spent some quality time together with him.
We have been discussing, about need of traveling back to your home country, in different expat forums and how differently we all feel about it. Those who have been living abroad long time already, ties towards mother country, are not that strong anymore, do not have such a strong urge to travel back home every year. Finland is just a distant memory and when you go there, life has moved on in Finland. People have moved on, but you yourself still remember Finland as it was when you left.
The ones whom are “freshlings” seem to be missing the most Finland.Living there,food from there and everything else tends to be better in Finland, than in country where they live in.
And then there are people like me.People who do not really know where they belong. Only reason why I go to Finland, for holidays, is my family and couple of good friends.I worry about my parents, because I live so far away, that I cannot help them when they really need me.And they do not tell me always what’s going on.Reason being,they do not want to worry me. I have guilty feelings about all of this. But then again,I chose my life and I am happy about it.I could never move back to Finland and live there.I have changed and Finland as I knew it is gone.
Our holiday time is limited and we spent most of it in Finland.Oh,how I would love to post pictures from exotic countries and beautiful beaches, while drinking fabulous umbrella cocktails.But instead I go to summer-house,drink wine from the box and curse all the mosquitos 😉
Yet again, I am sending emails to friends, whom might be interested to meet with us. Grandmothers are calling and asking, when do we meet? And then there are those people, who say:”I would love to meet with you, but let’s see when I have time.” And afterwards you hear complains:”So you were secretly in Finland? Why didn’t you contact me?” But I did..I do not have any mood to call 20 times and ask.I am meeting those people who take time from their busy schedules for us.And,I am on holiday..Yes..ON HOLIDAY!! I do not want to be running from place to place, all two weeks, when I suppose to spent time with my family…
I am suffering from the culture shock, every single time, when I go back home to Finland. It usually last day or two, time which I need to my switch my brains onto Finland gear. When that is done, I am ok.
What is Finland gear? Well,when you go shopping you do not find shop assistants anywhere and if you do they are not very sales orientated. Forget “Thank you” or “Welcome”.People look me like I would have been realized from asylum if I greet them on the street.Small talk?? Ou yeah… What’s that..? 😉 And many other things..
As the years go by, our friends in Finland, have become few. All acquaintances, that you thought were your friends, while you lived there, have disappeared from your lifes. And it is ok so. I never would have time to meet everybody. I am thankful for those friends who take time to meet us.
Yet again, I am packing my bags with mixed emotions.Going home,feeling good about it, looking forward sitting in sauna and talking with my parents,but then again not going “home”, because my home is in Austria. My heart is in both places.. But I really do not belong completely to either. I think this feeling is very difficult to understand, for those, whom have been living their whole lives in one country. When they go abroad,they go always for a holiday and return home.Simple as that..