What is the most daring, unexpected, your friends and family think your nuts, thing you have ever done?
For me, I would have to say moving to Romania. Imagine waking up one day in a foreign land where you can’t speak the language, you can’t read the language and getting lost began the minute you stepped out of your apartment.
The experience was incredible, eye-opening, insightful, and has radically altered my world view.
How very different life is outside of the boundaries of the U.S.A. In ways I could not begin to conceive of, my time in Romania opened my eyes and my heart. The people there are far more relationship minded than in the states, i.e. people still matter more than things and status. Many times we unwittingly become wrapped up in our bubble and this I believe causes us to have a skewed perspective and an unrealistic expectation of what our lives should be focused on.
I recall waking to the sound of horses clip clopping down the street outside my bedroom window in a small village called Razvad where we rented a home for a while. I propped up on one elbow and peered out to the street to see horse-drawn wagons filled with various goods being transported into the city to sell at outdoor markets. People walking and biking and buses loaded with passengers on their way to work. Mixed in with this idyllic setting, were mothers and grandmothers laden with buckets going out to community wells to fetch water for cooking and washing and feeding. My first impression was that some how we had transported back in time some 100 years.
In the daily activities though, I noticed something else, conversations among the villagers happened non-stop people talked to each other, people knew their neighbors, not just a cursory nod of their heads or a passing wave, they really knew and cared about each other. They traded eggs for cabbages or one would watch the others children while they went to market to pick up staples for both families. Hitchhiking was so common one could sometimes be confused whether someone was waving at a friend or needed a ride. In a word community was happening as I think it was really meant to be.
Reading this, I would not be surprised at all if you live in the United States, that not only does this concept seem foreign to you, it also doesn’t particularly appeal to you either. As long as we remain in our bubble we will continue to live our separate lives and we will miss in my opinion some of the greatest adventures of our lives.
Have you lived somewhere else? How did it impact you?