I've always wanted to write a blog, I just wasn't sure I had anything to say worth reading. I'm still not sure. But here it is, plain and simple, my thoughts for you to read and forget, or read and enjoy, or maybe even read and relate to...
I'd been telling people for months that it was my plan to move to Switzerland; and secretly, I loved telling people. I loved the cool persona I was weaving for myself- "Wow, look at Sarah, she's so adventurous and independent!" I tried not to concern myself with the actual realities of living abroad. I just had a plan to leave everything behind, and having a plan was all I needed. Well now I'm here, and so far, living in a foreign country hasn't made life any more transparent or purposeful. Don't let Instagram posts of charming Swiss cottages fool you. The language gap and new geography simply give me a better reason for feeling just as lost as I did back home.
I've been doing some lone exploring of the city, visiting museums and cafés, and drawing a mental map for myself. I've also been keeping a journal, a couple actually- one for reflection and collecting of scraps, and a smaller, travel-sized one for spur of the moment thoughts, poems, and scribbles. The other day I wrote down "A list of reasons why I moved to Switzerland- and ways to explain it to people that aren't self-deprecating." (yes, I'm very specific with list titles) I haven't decided which of these explanations I like better:
-Learning new methods for living
-Attempting to live authentically and presently
...I either sound like a determined scientist or a tortured existentialist. I just need to choose one, because if I have to answer one more "So what's your reason for coming here?" with "I don't really know, I mean my mom is Swiss and I have family here, and I'm trying to find a job dancing, and I want to learn the language, and I don't really have a plan, and I'm just seeing how it goes, and..." I'm not going to make any friends.
I've been trying to make myself speak German, but apart from a failed attempt to buy stamps at the postoffice or order the occasional cappuccino, English has been too easy a crutch to fall back on. Some choice phrases in Swiss German that I've been quick to pick up are: "What is that?" "That is good." and "Sorry, I'm still learning Swiss German."
I've taken a liking to the house cat, despite being allergic. He comes up close and purrs and couldn't give two shits why I'm here or what my life plans are. He just seems to appreciate my company. I should strive to be more like the cat- going out at night, putting myself out there with unapologetic confidence and an ability to walk away sassily if I get bored. Maybe I shouldn't be more like the cat.
Well, to summarize my first month abroad, cheese and chocolate are much too accessible, I'm pretty sure jet lag is no longer a viable excuse for sleeping until 11:30, and cats are not great wingmen. Don't worry, not all of my posts will turn out to be this whiny or quippy. I hope. But I've got to start somewhere; and who knows, I might even learn something along the way.