I´m at home for a week and it´s so good to be around close family and friends! Yet I can´t help but feel estranged. I´m gliding in, just not really. I feel so out of place, so obviously different, wearing my sandals (mostly because my ballerinas are golden and I feel they´re too glitzy for a Wednesday morning) when everyone else is wearing a jacket! At 23 degrees! I forgot that 23 degrees is not much here, though, in summer it´s closer to 40 degrees.
Finally Sunday! So good to be able to breathe and know you have no plans other than coffee with friends. I have an interpreting colleague visiting and after speaking my mother tongue for three days in a row, I´m starting to be fluent again! 😉 haha! Today I´ve been thinking a lot about identity and belonging. In fact, we discussed it at length over coffee and waffles at our friends´ place. Whether an immigrant feels most allegiance with the mother country or the country of residence has been a much disputed subject in the media, too. How the second generation immigrant defines herself is another interesting topic. For my part, I feel I belong nowhere in particular, but that I could live in pretty many places. I´ve lived 20 years in Romania and 15 in Norway. Romania is the country of my childhood and my adolescent dreams, while Norway is the place where I started reasoning, found love and matured. Whenever I travel back to Romania I say I´m going home and when I leave for Norway I say I´m going back home. Still I feel a bit out-of-place in both environments. And I get “Where are you from?” quite often. My line of work is a dog eats dog world. I´ve run my own race and worked myself nearly to death the first three years and now I´m exhausted and tired of fighting. It´s slowly getting better, partly because I´m one of 7 certified interpreters in the country (Romanian-Norwegian) and partly because I´ve chosen to surround myself with the few colleagues I like. Back in the day, when I used to work in a bank, I could count on one hand the people I had something in common with. Now I can count them on two. 😉 I think it must be me, I´ve always felt like an outsider. I guess on a certain level I couldn´t be bothered with “the little man´s stuff”, however harsh that sounds. Hoping for more sense of belonging in the coming days, now that the first sign of spring is here. 😉 Tell me about your experiences in connection with the subject, if you have any! 😉 Meanwhile, enjoy my pictures! 😉