It didn’t take me long. I’ve been having moments of nostalgia thinking of Sweden. More specifically, some of the things I would do there, and interestingly it’s pretty much exactly what I expected to miss. Things and people. Break it down, Ms Haley!
Walking, or more frequently, biking to the nearest cafe with the wind in my hair (haha) and being pretty much guaranteed a fantastic cup of coffee no matter the place or time or cafe. People sitting for hours at their tables talking and not caring if they’re holding up that space for too long, reveling in that time spent with whoever they were with. I want meeting and talking over a hot drink to be a staple in my day to day again. I need to incorporate it here, I said I would but I haven’t yet. I have faith though :) The cozy cafe atmosphere for that sort of thing I have yet to really find here, although I’ve only just scratched the surface so..
Speaking of bikes and walking. I NEED to start biking again. I miss it terribly, the moment I can afford to buy a bike I’m gonna get one and stick it downtown and just go for bike rides around the city and do the things I used to with it. I wish I could bike to work and town but I will take what I can right now! So I guess what I’m saying is the feeling of being outside walking and on a bicycle is unparalleled to all other modes of transport, for the most part, and I only ever experienced that fully living in Malmö. So they are closely related in my mind.
And last, yet most important, there are some people that I left behind that I can’t imagine how it will be to be away from long term. I grew up and grew to love a few wonderful human beings there and they will always be with me. I really miss you.
“Austin is like being on vacation all the time”. A 9 year old in the hall said that to me at my first meeting here. I can’t help but to agree with her. Austin is pretty great. It seems like it possesses whatever you need. Whether its drinking wine in the country or walking through fields of green or thru streams of water barefoot or dancing and riding an electric bull or pioneering and improving your spiritual health or even losing weight and getting fit. As strange as it is to put all those in the same sentence, it’s so true. It can do for you whatever you need it to. And I think that’s very special! There is so much offered here it’s hard to know where to start.
I guess to me the biggest difference, or rather a difference that means the most to me right now, is that when I first moved to Malmö 3 years ago I was asked by most of whom I met “why did you choose Sweden? Why did you move here?” insinuating that i’d almost made a mistake, shedding light on their lack of appreciation and joy for where they lived. They couldn’t see why, with so many other options, I would choose to live THERE. Even throughout the few years it kept coming up. I thought it was a little strange but I was so excited to have moved to Europe I couldn’t give a farts butt what they thought, I was gonna love it there if it was the last thing I did!!
So now, having that to compare it to, moving to Austin has been the complete opposite. Every single person I’ve met has been nothing but ridiculous with how much they love it here. Just like that little girl, it’s been ‘Austin is THE best place to live! Your gonna love it here! We wouldn’t live anywhere else!’ .. You get the idea. So I guess I just find it interesting that you can have a people that absolutely love where they live and then have another group of people that most of what they talk about is leaving. Granted, I don’t speak for all Swedish folk, nor all austinites. But it was just a feeling I got. I suppose I needed somewhere that people were excited to be, and I found it here.
I guess I learned how to really be able to connect with myself and see myself for who I really was in Sweden. I went through some of the toughest of toughs and I was able to come out of it breathing and even more than that, capable of making such a drastic change by myself like moving here. I believe its safe to say Sweden prepared me for the rest of my adult life and I think that’s also very special.
What will Austin hold?