Expat Homecoming

blogger, ukraine, usa, living abroad, expat, expat blog, wordly, alisa kaiser
Going back to the place where you grew up can be tough, especially if it is a small town. To the place that was so encouraging to leave (and not just for me) - a tiny town in eastern Ukraine. My journey was great. 

To start with: I began my "trip home" preparations months ago, no joke. I had to lose a few pounds ("Oh my god, I didn't even recognize you! You got so fat! Well I understand, American food and all"). I had to gear up on the beauty products ("Your face got so many pimples! What kind of stress do you go through over in that America?"). I had to reconsider my wardrobe ("What, you think you are in America? This is not an appropriate sweater for this weather! You have to go home and change") <- this comment didn't even come from my mom or grandma. At some stages of the prepping phase I just wanted to say to hell with it! and go as I am. But then I remembered a wise saying that belongs to someone: never forget the place where you came from. I put on my most slimming black coat and was on my way. 

All the comments above I personally received after my returns from the United States over the years. Some, from my professors in college even. I know. Poor me. 

I flew into this bowl of love, was smooched over by my family. I didn't have to cook or do dishes and only had to clean my tiara once a day. With my soup-obsessed family, I had to come up with the strategic plans of escaping the soupeveryday challenge. I even succeeded a couple of times. I was showered with gifts (did you see my new shoes? Check them out on my Instagram!) but still had to polish the tiara myself. 

During my vacation, I experienced the lack of hot water (try boiling water every day in order to shower. Have you seen the length of my hair? Yeah, I know); a few days and nights without any heating (look up the weather. Aha, yeah, I know); no electricity for different periods of time throughout the days (that was actually easier to live through). Some people go abroad to spend their vacation.. or go hiking, go to the ocean. I spend my vacation survival style! 

I guilted my friends into coming back to town. That's a perk of living far away: you can make attempts at people manipulation. Since all of their families stayed in this town - I can't really claim this as my accomplishment. 

Everyone was happy to see me and quick to judge as always. But I did enjoy bringing some new gossip into this town. Not without receiving a dose of new gossip in return, of course. This is where I was born and where I grew up...coming back makes me take a look at everything I accomplished since I left. And it feels great. Gotta go shine up my tiara. For the next year :)


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