“Oh you’re the Canadians?” Everywhere we go that’s the greeting we get. We are the Canadians. Jyvaskyla is in many ways just like home. There is an amazing amount of beautiful scenery, trees, lakes, parks and of course, sauna. Everything is uphill here, but as you can see it’s normally worth the climb.
Right now I’m riding a bus, the suns come out and all I can think about is the beauty of this city. As a Canadian, this is new, I’ve said it’s much like home but in more than one way it’s nothing like it. For example, Starbucks doesn’t exist. Many of the parking lots are not pavement but beautiful stone work. It’s a country of 5.5 million and there are 3 million saunas. Saunas are everywhere. Sure those are tangible … ish kinds of things.
The most amazing thing and the feeling or emotion I would like to convey is something I don’t know how to explain. I don’t speak the language, I don’t read it, the food is so different (no spice… salt and pepper are spice and they’re rarely used) Everything about my appearance screams outsider! Foreigner! Different! It’s been 1 week, and I haven’t felt like I don’t belong. I haven’t felt like any of those things. I’ve noticed that I’m becoming more and more comfortable with myself.
Yes there are certain comforts of home that I miss. There are certain people I miss. I’ll be honest, I miss work, my books, my games. I even miss the hustle and bustle of getting ready for frosh. I guess I somewhat miss my routine.
I am Canadian. I am living in a country thousand of kilometres away from my home. I am in no way in any rush to come home. I’m sure there will come a time while I’m here where things will get difficult and I’ll want to board a plane and run away as fast as possible. However as for right now I’ll relish in being one of the Canadians and the beer pong champion of Jyvaskyla.