I leave in 4 days. I have 4 days left to enjoy Switzerland and then I pack up, fly out and go back home. Where has the time gone? In a sense, it feels as if I’ve only had 3 weeks to stay in this beautiful country, but I know that’s not true – but why must time always go so quickly?
Rather than 3 weeks however, I’ve been here nearly 3 months, having arrived last year at the end of December 3 days after Christmas. Oh, I had been looking forward to this trip for quite sometime. It had been nearly 3 years since I visited this part of Switzerland, and stayed with this Swiss Family. I still remember how excited and anxious I had been, especially when I was actually boarding the Swiss Airlines plane, and passing all the flight attendants who were chattering in that rich Swiss German dialect. How I had missed listening to it!
My time here thus far has been rewarding for me – I’m so happy to have been offered another opportunity to stay here. I’ve been in the canton of Graubünden, which is by far the most beautiful canton of Switzerland, in my humble opinion. The Alps here are most majestic and the valley are scattered with small villages which are settled snug next to the Rhine River…where I’m staying anyway. In snow, it is beautiful; in spring it is beautiful. I’ve experienced the snow during the winter months, which, as a person coming from the Southern United States, was an extra special treat for me. It was truly a ‘Winter Wonderland’ here! I loved trekking through the soft white snow, all bundled up in my winter/snow appropriate garb, haha. I enjoyed sledding down the slopes through the woods that lay at the foot of the Alps. Swiss people know how to have fun in Winter!
And I’ve truly experienced a real spring over here. I’ve always been a autumn lover, preferring the colder months to the warm. However, I speak as a person coming from the deep South where it is mostly always warm and hot; I therefore look forward to any coldness that comes, which I must add, isn’t a whole lot.
In Florida, where I’ve lived the past 7 years (but will be now living Georgia once I go back home to live with my grandparents), one doesn’t get to experience much of a spring. After a usually mild winter, it jumps straight into summer. If it’s getting warm in February, I know it’s going to be a hot summer. And depending on what the weather wants to do, it could begin to cool off in September, or dillydally until early December. Beyond my control.
It has been, though, so wonderful to watch the snow melt, and then see the little flowers springing forth from the earth in all shades of color: yellow, white, pink and purple. The weather has grown warmer and the birds are always singing. The trees have recently begun to bud as well. Spring is so different here, but so lovely. I’m watching new life come forth.
Today, as I sit and type this out on my laptop, I don’t listen to any birds. It is a dismal day, cold and rainy. So unlike Monday, which had been so beautiful, it rains and is even a bit foggy. Sunny, rainy, sunny, rainy. March Madness at its peak, for sure. But because this is my last week here, I’m hoping the weather might cheer up a bit so I can take the time to get out and enjoy the sun, perhaps going on another bike ride.
Last Friday I spent the most wonderful day in the Heidiland, wandering through the village and ascending through the forest to reach the Alps. It had rained over the weekend, but Monday’s weather was perfect and I seized the opportunity to go on a bike ride – all the way back to the Heidiland. I pedaled through villages, through forests, meadows, farmland, even passed a castle at one point. I ventured on through vineyards where folks were already busy working. I rode on through the valley, a few trains passing me by, admiring the rich vivid greenness of it all. How I long to stay for summer. What must summer be like in Europe? I bet it’s so wonderful. Quite different from Florida, I’m sure. I would be having a picnic everyday, probably! ;D
I do look forward to going home, though. It’s going to be another busy year, I think. I have lots to do – so much I can’t bother listing them here, but just to highlight a few basics: getting another job, getting fit for summer and work on changing my diet – eat more healthy! – fix up my car to tiptop shape, and to bond again with my family.
It’s funny, when you live abroad, even if but temporarily, home becomes the place at which you are staying. True, I have a home back in the States, but my home is also here. As much as I try to always stay connected to my family and friends back at home, somehow it’s slowly becoming more distant for me. People grown up, get on with their lives, and change. Life goes one. I’ve always missed my family and my country when I’ve been away; at times, even feeling lonely, especially when all I hear is mostly another language. However, once I’m back at home I feel like people can’t understand me fully, and sometimes begin to feel like I don’t completely fit in,… just a little out of place. I miss my friends and life back on the other side of the world.
And always wonder when I’ll go back.
Life is all about change, it seems.
God grant me patience to wait and see what the future brings.
I can only wonder.