Kristýna Mihmanlı
My Big Trip to Big Apple /article/my_big_trip_to_big_apple
Sat, 10 Feb 2018 10:38:59 +0000

So a few years ago I was living in my home city, studying bachelor, no clear plans for future. And I am thinking... Jeez I am just standing at one spot, not moving ahead at all! I need to do something. So what can I do? I mean really, I can't really do much, haha. So I guess what is quite necessary is languages right, I am learning French, Spanish and I should know English by now... well but I don't know any of them actually - sounds reasonable to just get out to meet some new people and practice English then, since that's kinda the most important language out of these... And then I am thinking... I have never been to an English speaking country (for reasonable time by myself) and I would really like to see another continent finally. So I started looking for options and realised these programs for students, like work & travel, are just vacuuming money out of young people. And I tried to go on my own. I am thankful to my mommy for the support, because she helped me to buy the tickets, but other than that I didn't have almost any money and went to the U.S. with a return ticket 3 months from then.

So I was going there and I was a bit worried, you know, no one wants to stay on the street on a different continent. So I ensured 2 things which made it a lot less complicated. I had family there which I met only once in Czech though... so didn't really know them. Anyway, they promised some support in case of a problem. And I reached Couchsurfing. Found a guy that seemed like he is not gonna kill me, I ensured on other portals that the guy exists and really studies and I texted him. I explained that I will only need his help if something happens and in that case I would use his couch for like up to 3 nights. And he said yes.

So I really go to the U.S. and thank god my auntie helps me to stand on my own feet. I am super confused, because I realise my English is even worse than I thought and I don't understand sh*t. Anyway, I fight it somehow. I mean, you can't win anything if you don't fight, right? So I wake up every morning to this place which is strange to me and go out for 8 hours to another place strange to me, where no one understands me and I don't understand anyone. And people are really not nice there - no kidding. Like some sexist comments and stuff, but also comments about my abilities. Which were obviously not really there because of lack of knowledge of the language, right. But anyway, everyone needs some understanding and credit. Believe me, every day was fighting with shame, learning tons of new stuff, trying to behave accordingly to keep my dignity and keep the stage I was in at the same time, because I knew I would have to return to my country otherwise.

A week passed and I am thinking... Jeez I can't do this anymore. I need someone in my age and I need him/her to stand on my side. So of course what comes to my mind first is texting the Couchsurfing guy. He was like 2 hours far from me, but whatever! I really needed to escape at the moment. So I go to the city and go to have a drink with this guy and everything else disappears. All worries, all shame, all problems are gone. Somehow with my nonexistent English, we understand each other, we laugh and I don't feel like a clumsy little nothing that I was for the week.

Yes. That was it. I met him. We saw each other more and more often and ended up going for 2 vacations during that summer. We decided to try it even long distance and during the years of the relationship ups and downs we knew we have each other and kept supporting each other as he did when he first met me. And here we are. He is my husband.

Do stuff. If you want your life to move ahead, you have to move either. But if you go towards something and you learn to stand up and keep going after each fall, you realise it's not that hard, it's fun and it's worth it! :-)

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