My corner

Season of change

by The Flamingo

They say the stress of moving is second only to the stress of divorce. Since I am not familiar with the latter (thank God), I would say moving has definitely been the most stressful and distressing time of my life. Coincidentally enough all the big transitions happened in autumn or early winter. From going to university, moving in with my husband (then boyfriend) in a 16m2 studio to buying our own home and then moving around the world, it all happened around this time of year. 

I don’t do “change” extremely well. Although I can say I am a pro by now, it still rattles me a lot. As usual I have a hard time letting go…of stuff, places and people. I could be one of those pharaohs who needs a pyramid so I can be buried with all my beloved things. So the whole concept of packing, sorting, throwing things away is heartbreaking. And then getting used to a new environment and new people is not very easy for me. Also the bureaucracy and paperwork required for a move is adding grey hairs. 

This autumn we had another home change, not to a different country, but to the family style suburbs. This would be the first time I am not living in a city and let me tell you, I didn’t think I would end up living in a quiet charming Swiss little town (or village…still debating its status). My biggest surprise was how much I love it. From all the moves I have ever made this is my second most happy change of all, the first one being when my husband and I were newlyweds and had our own place. 

So village life…who knew?! This is a discovery I still have to dive into, but from the looks of it is very delightful. For the first time I feel a sense of community, a bond between people who live here, being Swiss or expats. Everything is so easy, you get to places in 2 to 5 minutes. Its center looks like it’s from Readers Digest top European most charming hideouts, with old architecture, gardens, shops, cafes and small traditional restaurants and biergartens. Everything is surrounded by the lake, hills and forests. 

My point is that the surroundings are definitely helping me with the adjustment period. For example, when I lived in Dubai, the mesmerising environment helped a lot with dealing with the loneliness, the different culture and with the distance from anything remotely familiar. It was easy to forget about all that when I was spending lots of time at the beach or in luxurious malls.

There is also an exciting time when moving to a new place, when you get to buy new stuff for the house. This is my favourite part of all. It’s like a reward for all the stress of moving and getting rid of old things you don’t need anymore. Shopping has definitely been a medicine for me in my worst moments, but I learned to do it wisely and I learned a new kind of feeling called “patience”, which is also very rewarding. 

Hopefully the next move will be many many years away and we can settle peacefully in this new community, enjoying Swiss village life. 

Photo from Flamingo‘s archive.