Many dream at least once in their life to decide on something truly bold. For example, take and move to another country. We talked to people who did just that. Here are stories that sometimes spontaneous decisions become the best decisions in life.
- In the third year of the Faculty of Journalism of Moscow State University, I began to be interested in beatniks.
It was this hobby that became the reason for the three-month hitchhiking trip to the USA. Without a hitchhiking, it seemed impossible to write a term paper on American literature of the 1950s. It was necessary to feel the spirit of the times, to plunge headlong into adventure, in the end - to write poetry at the gas station of Tennessee in the late night. I returned to Moscow, completed my sacred work and immediately fell into a terrible depression. My best friend Dunya saw a solution to the problem on a new trip.
We decided that youth knows no 28ain and hitchhiked from Moscow to Scandinavia. And almost without money. We didn’t return back (I just want to write - they froze to death). My girlfriend moved towards the south of Europe, and I - to California. I bought a ticket for $ 700, which was sent to me by a worried dad who wanted to see his daughter in Moscow.
In San Francisco, I worked in a hostel so as not to pay for housing, and interned in a museum dedicated to the history of hipsters. So I lived for five months, until the visa expired. I had to move on. I traveled to Latin America for three years, worked in hostels and restaurants, took orders for translation of texts about forged gratings and stainless metal. In Argentina, I finally learned Spanish and started working as a journalist.
Later I realized that Argentina is not quite mine and that I want to go back to Mexico, the first Latin American country I visited.
Two and a half years ago I came to Mexico City. Now I work in the gallery of modern art, give Russian and English lessons, write articles. Mexico is a country of dreams, everything here is colorful, vibrant and excessive. But the main thing is, of course, people.
Mexicans with their Native American calm and childish curiosity are very friendly - making friends here is simple, you can at least a couple a day, would be a desire. But cultural differences are also unconditional. For example, in Mexico they do not like sad people - there is only one solid carnival and fiesta. It's not that Mexicans never suffer from depression, it's just not customary to talk about it. Another taboo is the word no.
Nobody says anything directly - they will probably find 300 lengthy formulations here, from which you won’t even understand that you were refused. Another point is the relation to time. In Spanish, there is the word ahora, which means "now." In Mexico, a diminutive suffix is added to this word and it turns out ahorita, which means "at some point, or maybe never."
- When will you wash the dishes?
And the dishes have been unwashed for three weeks.
When you leave the usual "cocoon", at first there is ecstasy from new places, people and sensations, but then delight is replaced by frustration - everything is different, and this also needs to be adapted. This is the main migrant issue, having resolved which, you will either change or be permanently stuck between two worlds - divorced from everything that mattered in your native country, and far from everything important in the new. But you should not be afraid anyway.
- I worked at Rusnano - I promoted various genetic services - I lived in Moscow and didn’t think about moving house.
But on May holidays, my friends and I flew to Georgia, where it all started. We were amazed: on May 1 it was already warm there, everything was blooming. We traveled around the country - studied it, walked to the markets where our grandmothers hugged us and said how good it was that we arrived. In general, there I met my Georgian. When, after vacation, my friends and I, already back in Moscow, rode in a taxi along Kutuzovsky Prospekt, everything around me seemed huge and gray.
After a little green Georgia - a real blow. Three days later, a friend and I decided to move and bought tickets. It was difficult for me to decide on this alone. We had already said after trips that it would be nice to live somewhere else, but usually in a couple of days it would go away - everyday life would suck.
We found an apartment in Tbilisi, arrived there with things that fit in a suitcase, and began to live.
We have set a trial period of three months - it’s easier to sum up when there is a specific period of time. We decided that if we liked it, we would stay, no, we would return.
We lived these three months and realized that we won’t leave anywhere. Because right next to the house you can buy immediately 18 kilograms of peaches and grapes, and in the warm evenings to drink wine in the open. This can not be described in words.
I thought about finding a job and even made inquiries at the Russian embassy. However, everywhere employees with knowledge of the Georgian language were required, which I have not yet fully mastered. I realized that there were no options other than doing something of my own, and my partner Alena and I opened the Hurma cafe. So our idea of a wine cellar with a pottery wheel grew into our own business.
And yes, everything is good with the Georgian so far.
- In 2013, I was finishing my studies at St. Petersburg State University of Economics, and I had the last opportunity to go for an exchange to Europe or Asia Since almost all my life I studied French, I chose France and in September 2013 left for four months in Lille. Two months later, I already felt like a local resident and found myself not wanting to leave at all. That is why for the next academic year I decided to enter the magistracy. Fortunately, I managed to get a scholarship to study at one of the universities in Rennes.
Nevertheless, I had to return to Russia for a short time: I had to get a diploma. In September 2014, I left, and it was the best choice I have ever made in my life.
When I left to study for the second time, I didn’t have the goal of staying in France - rather, I wanted to get an international education, a valuable diploma and learn French in order to master it perfectly. Moreover, a mantra from friends and acquaintances constantly sounded in my head - nobody needs you there, you won’t find work there, you definitely have to come back . I even thought they were right.
Months passed, and with this, understanding grew that I did not want to leave France. In addition, sanctions against Russia began then, the euro rose to one hundred rubles, and everything around me was calm. I felt safe, in harmony with the society of which I had become a part. This lifestyle was closer to me than the lifestyle that I led in Russia. I realized that if I get home, I’ll just go crazy because of the gap between the two worlds.
In general, I decided to try to stay after studying in France. For a foreign student, the only way to do this is to find an internship. However, it is very difficult - the French personnel officers will choose such a candidate in the last turn. After five months of unsuccessful searches and complete despair, I received a long-awaited call with an invitation to an interview in Paris. Twenty minutes after the meeting — I didn’t even have time to come to my senses — they called me and said that I had been accepted for an internship.
Then there was the even more complicated process of finding a permanent job - before I received the first invitation for an interview, I sent 70 applications with resumes and motivation letters. It was an incredibly difficult period - some of my letters were not answered, and I was close to surrendering. But one invitation was enough - since 2016 I have been working as a financial analyst in a large international company.
Ever since I moved to the capital, Paris gradually began to turn from a city that used to cause me rejection, into a place where I want to stay. Now that I have three years behind me in France, I can’t imagine myself anywhere else.
Every time I return after traveling, I feel like I am returning home.
As a child, when I read Harry Potter, I wanted to live in England, and after school my parents helped to realize this dream - I went there to study. Over time, I realized that I was very comfortable here: I understand people, people understand me. I felt that here I can achieve something and reach my potential. I became more open and free in how to express myself and who to be.
There was no such sensation in Moscow. I don’t know, maybe this is due to the fact that I just matured and realized who I was. Or maybe with the fact that there are conditions that help to understand your strengths. When my studies came to an end, I had to make a choice - to return home or try to stay. I thought that I would always have time to return to Russia, but if I want to try my hand and prove that I am worth something, this should be done immediately after university, there will be no other opportunities.
I was able to find work and have been working in London in the financial sector for three years.
I really like England - people from all over the world live here. I learn so much about them. This experience showed me that I am not afraid of difficulties and want to travel. I want to see as much as possible.
Now I truly appreciate freedom of movement.
- In 2012, I had a terrible depression due to problems in my personal life. I could not cope with her in any way, even working with a psychologist did not help. I realized that the usual environment only interferes with recovery, and decided to go on a trip. I handed over my room in the center of Moscow, packed up my backpack and left for Asia.
I assumed that I would be back in three months, but the trip lasted longer - a year and seven months. At first I lived in Thailand - there I took a course of silence and meditation Vipassana and lived a month in a forest Buddhist monastery in the north of the country. Then I traveled to Burma, India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia. In Kuala Lumpur, I started working as a guide. I still can’t part with this profession.
I liked living in an unusual environment: waking up with a view of the mountains, stopping at the ocean, starting the morning with an offering of food to the monks or with yoga. I returned to Koh Phangan to take a course at a yoga school. This is a very expensive island, and to stay there for a long time, I needed a job. In a cafe, I accidentally talked with a Russian girl - she was just looking for an editor for her site. So I was able to stay for a few more months.
I rented a house in the jungle with a huge veranda and sea views. I even settled a wild cat. Over time, dad began to insist on my return, although it seemed to me that I was ready to return to Russia.
In a solo journey, you are more open to the world, constantly meeting people who share their stories with you, teach, help something. This kind of spiritual practice.
I used to think that I was an extrovert who needed a company, but found that I was very comfortable with one. Although there were attacks of loneliness and despair. I remember situations when it seemed to me that I was completely alone and no one would help me, as it is not known where the people who helped me came from.
I also realized how vulnerable people are and how important the inner world is - I heard so many stories about people who fell ill due to severe stress, old grievances and heartache.
In almost two years in Asia, I have done a lot of work on myself, my attitude and ability to interact with other people.
I worked out injuries and fears, learned to defend my interests, and became much stronger. I returned with peace of mind in order to continue living here - in Russia.