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So it's hit me too, isolation in Poland


BevK 11 | 248  
15 May 2009 /  #1
Yeah I am at the point where the homesickness really has kicked in.

I know this will pass, but I feel like a total alien at the moment (yes I know I am a foreigner before anyone says it) and like I will NEVER get to grips with Polish. That side I can address by taking lessons etc but ... my goodness, I never thought I'd feel so lonely!

The irony is knowing I can't go back to the UK - this is not an option for me, I have to make a go of my minimum year here so I have to get past this "hump".
Guest  
15 May 2009 /  #2
Why do you feel home sick?.

Why isn't going back to the U.K. an option?.

Why do they call it cargo when it goes by ship and shipment when it goes by car?.

You'll be grand.
Wroclaw Boy  
15 May 2009 /  #3
Ride the highs and the lows buddy, its inevitable that youd be feeling like this at some point. I remember when i did my first season working in the Alps back in 1998, i had some lows when i just wanted to throw in the towel but i'd go out and have an awesome day on the mountain and then start thinking about reality in the UK, what it was like why i left etc.. OK Poland's not exactly the Alps, however get out find something worth hanging around for: set a goal..

You'll be just fine.
z_darius 14 | 3,968  
15 May 2009 /  #4
After about a year in the US I was struck too. I wanted to go back to Poland. I couldn't. Commies were still in power then. As WB says, setting a goal and sticking to it helps.
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
15 May 2009 /  #5
You get those moments where all around you appears foreign and inaccessible. Trust me, the potential for isolation is much worse in Asia. I just got stuck in, remained open-minded and let myself take in a lot of new experiences.

Here, the transformation was easier but maybe you need a lucky break. Mental conditioning can often distort reality. The UK is a cesspit in some parts, many parts are unappealing and there are few things that I miss.

Give it another crack of the whip and if you know what you want, you may well get it :)
OP BevK 11 | 248  
16 May 2009 /  #6
Thanks guys.

The bridges are burned, Guest ...

There's three things eating at me: I want to lose weight and get healthier, I want to learn the language and I want to meet people. So, gym, Polish classes and getting out there is the plan.

I guess today is a good day - it's absolutely horrible out there, raining, cold, miserable and I have been at work for hours after a night out last night and a lunchtime dinner date with a friend. Maybe tonight I will go out for museum night, maybe not, but my little flat seems welcoming at the moment rather than lonely. Plus, if you can look with city-affection in weather as nasty as this ...

It does help, yes. Thanks guys x
plk123 8 | 4,150  
16 May 2009 /  #7
if nothing else, drinking lots of vodka will help. :D
OP BevK 11 | 248  
16 May 2009 /  #8
I'm not saying the obvious!

Mind you I did have Cherry Vodka last night and that was very very nice.
McCoy 27 | 1,275  
16 May 2009 /  #9
drinking lots of vodka will help

and doing drugs
z_darius 14 | 3,968  
16 May 2009 /  #10
I did have Cherry Vodka last night and that was very very nice.

It may have been nice, but you're not integrating.
What on earth is wrong with the perfectly good drink of straight vodka.
Why stick some fruit in it? How un-Polish;)
pgtx 29 | 3,159  
16 May 2009 /  #11
the perfectly good drink of straight vodka.

followed by pickles or herrings...

Why stick some fruit in it?

yes, the same about beer...

;)
OP BevK 11 | 248  
17 May 2009 /  #12
It may have been nice, but you're not integrating.
What on earth is wrong with the perfectly good drink of straight vodka.
Why stick some fruit in it? How un-Polish;)

LOL

Every year my dad used to get bottles of the terrifying overproof alcohol and throw in lots of sugar and tons of cherries - come Xmas it was ready and I wasn't allowed to have any.

Besides Darek, this one was bought for me at random by someone who just arrived at our table. How do you get much more Polish than that? :)
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
17 May 2009 /  #13
The Poles are good that way, they draft you into their drinking endeavours. However, some unwanted 'guests' often appear, inviting themselves to sit with you. I hate this!

Isolation can take place within your home country and that's a point worth remembering. Have a seat, take a breath and think about what you really want and can reasonably expect from life here. Trust me, Bev, I've done the same.

As a final comment, be glad that you don't live under Sharia Law and radical rule. It could always be worse ;) ;)
dcchris 8 | 432  
17 May 2009 /  #14
Join some sort of group or something. Get out there and meet the Poles. They are pretty friendly people. If you work then you should get to know somebody.
OP BevK 11 | 248  
17 May 2009 /  #15
Half Polish ... just don't speak it yet (the main problem, to be honest).

Seamus ... uh, yes. You also make a wise point about isolation even at home.

I do work but since I speak exclusively English at work not learning much Polskiego. I'm going to join the gym first and foremost and also to trace my father's family tree if I can.
jump_bunny 5 | 237  
17 May 2009 /  #16
BevK, where in Poland are actually living? I'm sure there are many things to do and to keep you busy as long as you live in a town. I've been in a situation when I felt crazily lonely living abroad even although I have had a few friends there and I know from my own experience that doing anything that takes your free time is a quite much of a help as you don't dwell on things and don't think about how good it would have been if you stayed home.
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
17 May 2009 /  #17
BevK, the gym is a super idea. I haven't been for over a year but used to go at least once a week. It really takes your mind off of things. I paid 8PLN and was there for a couple of hours, a good deal. It was well-equipped. I used to do a lot of stepper work and liked kick-boxing the punch bag.

Go for it, it's a great release :)
frd 7 | 1,399  
17 May 2009 /  #18
Buying a music instrument and learning to play by yourself, it's also a good idea for drifting away from bad thoughts... I recommend a classic guitar : )
z_darius 14 | 3,968  
18 May 2009 /  #19
Besides Darek, this one was bought for me at random by someone who just arrived at our table. How do you get much more Polish than that? :)

Rare for a foreigner to know the short form of my f.name.
As for the vodka, I was just kidding. Getting out of touch with reality is the last thing I'd advise. It'll take a few more days or weeks and all will be fine. Just keep at it.
OP BevK 11 | 248  
18 May 2009 /  #20
Rare for a foreigner to know the short form of my f.name.

Like I say, half Polish :)
Trevek 26 | 1,702  
19 May 2009 /  #21
So, gym, Polish classes and getting out there is the plan.

I joined a gym and enjoyed nodding to people who also nodded to me, however, I also joined a martial arts club for a while and enjoyed the banter and cameradier (I know, not spelt correctly). Have you thought about joining something like a walking club (Nordic walking seems the in thing) or something like a reading group (bet they'd love to have a native speaker).

When I was in Macedonia I found it hard to do things if I didn't instigate them as there was a process of thought, "We wondered if you'd like to join us on a hill walk but we didn't ask in case you didn't!" Poland's nowhere near that bad but I have found it helps if you approach and join, then folk will come up and make themselves known to you.
ShelleyS 14 | 2,893  
19 May 2009 /  #22
I joined a gym and enjoyed nodding to people who also nodded to me

Personally Ive never made a friend at the gym, I like to get in work like a biatch and get the hell out of there! Harry must know what the ex-pats are up to in Warsaw, speak to him.
delphiandomine 85 | 18,267  
19 May 2009 /  #23
(Nordic walking seems the in thing)

Oh yes. Especially the idiots who enjoy Nordic Walking around your average commie Osiedle.

Idiots :/
kendriannna 7 | 32  
19 May 2009 /  #24
My mom is sending me hot sauce, my fav lotion, and who knows what. It will be my first care package. I am stoked. Homesickness if off and on. If I leave, I can never come back, cus thats how cool I am,, more like stupid.

Im lonely everyday.. So I talk to the cat, I garden, and of course talk to friends online:) seems to help:)
OP BevK 11 | 248  
19 May 2009 /  #25
Don't call yourself stupid :) I have no way back to my old life for a reason - whereabouts are you?

Guest asked me why I was homesick, well that's just how it goes sometimes, and it is getting better every day. The gym isn't about meeting people tho, it's about feeling healthier and more active and getting myself how i want to be :)
Trevek 26 | 1,702  
19 May 2009 /  #26
Personally Ive never made a friend at the gym

That's the thing... I never actually made 'friends' as such, but did get to know folk by sight. It felt like I was part of something, even if I rarely spoke to them. Since the gym put up it's fees again I didn't bother.

Oh yes. Especially the idiots who enjoy Nordic Walking around your average commie Osiedle.

I'm not a nordic walker, and we have loads of forests around Olsztyn, but your own life must be a bit lacking if they provoke such a reaction in you... maybe you secretly yearn to get two sticks and...
OP BevK 11 | 248  
20 May 2009 /  #27
maybe you secretly yearn to get two sticks and...

I notice she resists the temptation to answer you on this point :)
McCoy 27 | 1,275  
20 May 2009 /  #28
homesickness

i googled for your home town. it looks like a nice small town. and now youre in big busy grey warszawa. im not suprised that youre a bit down. think about moving to krakow, wroclaw, sopot or gdansk. it would be much more fun and better for your mental condition.
lexi 1 | 176  
20 May 2009 /  #29
Poland's nowhere near that bad but I have found it helps if you approach and join, then folk will come up and make themselves known to you.

I found that also, you don't really have to speak polish,the majority of people speak english. I have been in many situations in Poland where the entire group are speaking English, even though they are Polish, to show their respect. I say to them it's okay speak in Polish I understand I just cannot speak back, but they never do, or if they do they say sorry, speak in polish and them someone translates it back into English.

People just like being around people similar to themselves and feel comfortable with no matter what the nationality is.
OP BevK 11 | 248  
20 May 2009 /  #30
your mental condition.

Uh ...

My home town is Leeds, and I have lived in Birmingham and London (the latter, happily at the time for 10 years). I don't think normal homesickness is a mental condition (I know you don't mean that but it made me smile).

Things are changing already, little things are becoming familiar - it's a process we all go through I guess :)

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