expat lessons learnt uk

What I learned over the last month (#worldgonemad#Brexit#timefornewhome?#homeiswheretheheartis#ilovecyprus)

Wow, my last post was about a month ago… so much has happened since! But I won’t bore you with all of it!

The day I flew home to Cyprus was the day the EU referendum results were out…

I don’t usually get involved in politics as I believe that all politicians are pretty much the same, but this was an issue close to my heart, so I registered to vote.

I’ve heard and read a lot about all the possible scenarios. I understand that being a member of the EU is not always beneficial, we all know what happened to countries like Greece and Spain and Angela Merkel and her friends have not been the best advocates of the EU ideals.

But I voted to remain because I love being a part of a larger community, being able to travel freely across Europe and most importantly not have to worry about being an expat living in the UK… I thought the world was moving forward… I thought we are all now citizens of the world…

I was confident that the UK would have voted to remain. 99.9% of my friends and people I know strongly supported the Remain campaign. When I read the news that morning I was shocked and upset and angry…

I am sure I was not the only immigrant/foreigner/EU citizen living in the UK who was upset with the results. And I cried, I cried from the moment I heard the news until the plane landed in Cyprus…

I fully understand I shouldn’t take it personally and that not all Brits are racists and xenophobic. And I understand that a lot of people who voted to leave the EU were not fully aware of the implications or fell for the arguments of the Leave campaign.

But I felt unwanted at my own home. I’ve lived here for the last 8 years, and it was not an easy ride but I love and contribute to my community, I pay my taxes, I absolutely adore my friends and colleagues, I actually enjoy my job most of the time, I am happy with my life right now.

A life that can change any minute. The new Prime Minister (who is a strong supporter of surveillance and monitoring personal data amongst others!) can’t guarantee that EU citizens who already live here are safe… does that mean if I lose my job I’ll get deported?? Does that mean that when I retire I will need to leave my home???

So now what? I have no idea…

I had the most amazing time back home with family and friends. I am now a godmother to my little prince, I thoroughly enjoyed the sun, the sea, the culture, the Cypriot hospitality (best way to describe it is “a giant hug”) and truly felt the love… I was sad to leave, I found it very hard to say goodbye to everyone and I’d have loved to stay  for more than a couple of weeks. I can’t even describe how much I love Cyprus and everything that represents for me. But I am used to a different life now and I do not think I can move back home permanently, at least not now, but should I consider moving to another country??

I am very  confused about what my next move should be but I’ll stay for now. This is after all my home. A friend once told me “Running away from your problems is not the solution”. And he is absolutely right. He reminded me of a greek poem by Kavafy, “Η Πόλις/The city”.http://www.cavafy.com/poems/content.asp?id=58&cat=1  Blaming the city/place/the situation won’t change anything. Wherever you go, “the city” will follow you.

So first Brexit, then this week there was another terrorist attack in France and a military coup attempt in Turkey. And don’t forget what’s happening in countries like Syria. My heart aches for all the innocent people who lost their lives for nothing really. The world has truly gone mad.

Amidst all this madness though there is always hope. As long as there is still love and amazing human beings in the world, who make life worthwhile then there is still hope.

I recently watched Eat, Pray, Love, which reminded me of my own life and also inspired me and reignited my desire to travel and see more of this amazing world. It reminded me how important it is to never stop chasing my dreams, to want more in life, try everything and not compromise or give in to mediocrity or do anything which doesn’t make me happy. So I’ll leave you with this!

Love you all! xx

PS. I’d like to thank EVERYONE for all their lovely messages, hugs, love and support over the last month. Especially my close friends, you know who you are. And Sheba above all! I truly feel blessed and so lucky to have you all in my life xx

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