December 06, 2012

So what IS my decision then?

As mentioned in the previous post, the thought process started with my broken foot.
It continued with me listing what I was interested in, and what I wanted to do, as well as what I was missing, and I came to the conclusion that is was time to do something about it - the one thing I regret so far is that I haven't studied more languages, I want to communicate with people, I want to see and do more in the world, and therefore, languages are the one thing that I really miss - I do speak fluently English and Swedish, I speak German, I can speak French (although don't ask me about grammar, my grammar is not very good, even if my pronunciation is said to be - but I am working on that), I understand some Spanish (and I speak a bit too, enough to get buy as a tourist), Danish and Norwegian is not an issue. But I didn't study enough languages. I want to fix that.
Hong Kong island, November
Also, I have been in Germany for a number of years, and although I love it, things are starting to go a little bit too much routine, and I am also starting to feel restless, something I think I may have mentioned before. Düsseldorf is a great city, I have a great network of friends, and I enjoy what I do here, but there is something missing.  Things are becoming a bit too much routine, I know where to find people on Wednesdays, I know what is going on every third Thursday of the month, I arrange my events, I go to similar events again again and again. It is great events and it is fun, but I know pretty well what is going to happen and who is going to be there.
Work is also starting to be a bit more routine, even though there are interesting times coming up there as well. However I strongly believe one needs to reflect upon what is going on in life on a regular basis. It is fine to stay put in one location for the rest of your life, and in the same job, if that is what you want, if you do it on purpose, and after reflected upon the possibilities, but if you just do it without thinking, I feel there may be an issue. 

We spend so much of our time at work, and it is important that it is interesting and challenging, and that we get something out of it. I don't expect work to always be fun and games, but it needs to be interesting most of the time, even when there are routine tasks that you need to do.

 For me, I feel it is time to change, to something new, to test a new track, a new route. Leave the old things behind, test something new.

A grey day in November, I had built up the courage to actually go through with it - in November I resigned from my company. It wasn't an easy decision to make, but I have made it. It now turns out that the summer of 2012 was my last summer - at least in a while - in Düsseldorf,  Germany, which is where I currently live. Summer 2013 I will pack my bags and leave Düsseldorf. If it is for good or if I will move back at some point I don't know, although I do know that I will be back to visit even if I never move here again - but that is the only thing I can say for sure about the future.

I am in other words leaving Germany, and actually also leaving Europe. After I have left my company, I will not look for a job, at least not to start with, but I will become a student again. A language student. I will be moving to Asia, so south east Asia, a place close to my heart. To be precise, and it is in my nature to be just that, very precise, I am planning to move to Taiwan.  I am going there to study what may be one of  the more fascinating languages in the world: Mandarin, as we would call it in the western world, the main Chinese language. Why Taiwan and not mainland China? Well, many reasons, which I may write about later, but they are not important at the moment - what is important is that I am planning on leaving and I am planning on going to Taiwan.

Many people say that this is a big step, and it is, it is a giant leap, and I will be very sad to leave many friends behind, but on the other hand I have a broad network and wherever I am in the world I am close to friends, and at the same time, wherever I am, I am far away from other friends.  It is sad and it is fantastic, both at the same time - sad to be far away from so many but fantastic to always have friends in the nearby, wherever I am in the world (even though "the nearby" can be defined differently for different people.
Rice fields in northern Thailand
Do I know what I am doing? No, not completely. I travel to Asia every year, normally always alone, and I really enjoy the area, but I have not yet been to Taiwan, nor have I lived in Asia. On the other hand I will be there before my move. And of course, being me, I have a backup plan.

I know what it is like to move countries, I know how to get connected with people, and I am not afraid to be alone, fact is, I like to be alone from time to time. I am curious and I want to learn more. At the same time: From June 2013 I will no longer have a fixed income, and this is me, the person who worked as much as possible also during my university years, the person who never "just" studied, the person who had a fixed income since I was 16. The person who always lived according to the device "better safe than sorry". I am now in a way giving up on that safety - but the time is right. Life is more than just doing what everybody else expect from you. My only regret is that it has taken me so long to get the courage to do so, but then again I had other priorities before. Now I am feeling that it is time,  now I have built up enough and tried enough to know that I can do this. I can take care of myself, and I will indeed always land feet down, head up.

After a year of language travel, who knows where I will go next? Hopefully a few years in Asia, but who knows? I will leave it open, and we will see!

The journey has begun. Join me while I tell about it!

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