dinsdag 29 januari 2013

200 days in Paradise.


Day 200, Tuesday, 29th of January 2013 13:24
200 days in paradise.
200 Days, another milestone. 200 days really is a lot, I just read my blog of when I was here for 50 days, and I wrote that a lot of time had passed. Well now a lot of time had passed for real. I don’t even see it as a milestone, I didn’t really achieve anything. It is more a sad moment. Because now; now I really am in my last months. I can put it in an even worse perspective: within just 3 months my parents will be here, and after my trip with them there will be just 1 little month left.
But I don’t see it that negative, I think that this part of my exchange; returning the school, will be the best part. Over these holidays I made a lot of friends from school, I now feel part of them. This gets boosted by the fact that there are coming more exchange students to my school. I will be more Tico as European to them, and that, that makes me very happy.
In these 200 days I have a place which is as much as home as my house in The Netherlands, not more, not less. I can drink from the bottle and steal socks, or just enjoy a day at a river with family. In the beginning of my exchange I always felt different, not just because of my blond hair and blue eyes but because of who I used to be. But now I feel equal to my friends, I am not ‘that exchange guy’ in the group anymore; I am a full part of the group. The only difference is that I still have blond hair and blue eyes and I still am 1 meter 92. And inside, inside I am a fine mix of Costa Rican influences with my Dutch roots. After adjusting to the culture I became a part of it. I won’t say that I am a Tico, or that I adapted 100% to the culture. There will always be the Dutch things about me; some of them did get replaced by Costa Rican things. But who says you can’t have 2 cultures? I have 2 families as well, and not to forgot 3 languages.  
I experienced a lot here in this paradise-like country. The earthquake is memorable of course, as well for my days in Guanacaste, or Panama, or Puerto Viejo. I have been to many places; I created memories all over the place. That is one part of my exchange; the holiday part; travelling, seeing stunning things and doing unforgettable things and sharing perfect moments with best friends for life. And then there is the mental part, the way of thinking, something which changed way more as thought it would. Over 200 days I changed drastically, so much that I for some moments thought I didn’t even know my own sister anymore. I am a very different person as I was 200 days ago. The way I act, think and live. Also a part of exchange is homesickness, I experienced it. It wasn’t that bad I dealt with it, I found a cure. Other things I learnt to deal with are saying goodbye, which goes me very well. And also jealously; always the need for something more, always the need for change.
One of the best moments of these 200 days, an my whole life.
I made it this far, now there are just a bit more than 100 days left, 100 days of normal, Costa Rican life. I will have joy from them, learn from them, keep on changing because of them and miss them when I’ll be back home. 

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