I can't believe it, I have now lived in The Netherlands and with Loek for a year today! Soo much has changed in what could be classified by some in a brief amount of time. As, I reflect on the last year, I can't help but feel that although things did not go exactly they way I thought they would when I first moved, I am still incredibly glad I got on the plane with my cat and decided to make a life here with Loek.
When I first moved, I had no idea what I was really in store for. I did not realize how hard it would be to find a job. I also didn't realize that I would feel like I was in everyone's way whenever I walked out of my house. I have since -found a job, re-enrolled in school fulltime, and I am a speed walker. Here are a few other things that are different now then when I first landed.
I am really good at ease-dropping on conversations in Nederlands, I can read all menus without translation. I know what almost everything is in the grocery store. I can also order and hold a small conversation. I am still really uncomfortable speaking it, but I am sure that will come.
I know how to cook stampot, hutspot, and hachee. I know when oliebollen season is and which fish monger to go to at my local market. This year, I am going to try my hand a homemade speculaas.
I have almost survived my first period in an International higher education. It is not harder than the American system, just more work then I remember.
I can help both international and dutch tourists find their way or train in Utrecht and Amsterdam.
I also learned that no matter where you live, you are the combination of your experiences and where you grew up.
It is incredibly important to find friends that you can share your experiences with.
Lastly, I would like to thank everyone who stumbles across this blog. No matter when you started reading, your kind words and questions have made this journey a lot easier than it could have been. Sincerely, thank you!