1000 days

a couple of weeks ago, we passed the “1000 days in algarve” milestone, and i stopped to think about it for a bit. here are some scattered thoughts.

reverse culture shock was quite acute in the first year. frustrations ran high because of the house situation, but not just that. being used to the german black & white culture, coming back to flexibly gray portugal felt like a shock. almost 10 years after leaving, we were lost in trying to deal with a grown-up world whose rules we had not really fully experienced as adults before going away.

so it took us a while to reach a sort of balance, an understanding by trial and error. and it forced us to review our ethics code, to understand what we’re ok and not ok with in this society. having different perspectives from having lived all around the world certainly helped shape our rules of conduct, and be more strict about them — even if sometimes it feels like we’re the only idiots in this country not putting all our lunches in the company expenses.

eventually, we learned to let it go and focus on other things instead.

things like the joy of being able to see family and some friends more often. the sun, kissing our tanned, salty skins. the markets, the popular fairs in the small towns, the countryside and the hills beyond the coast. the lagoon with its salt hills and flamingos. all the visitors that our extra room can accommodate. the freshly squeezed orange juice and the toasts made with alentejo bread. the local indie cinema, with its thursday sessions. the nice neighbours who bake us dessert. almond blossoms in january. and the quietness of living in a safe, calm place, at a slow rhythm and without so many distractions.

it’s been good for us, this small-town life. i look forward to the next 1000 days.

one comment to “1000 days”

  • Sílvia says:

    Nunca tinha pensado nesta vossa mudança para Portugal desta perspetiva, mas é interessante — apesar de serem portugueses, o choque cultural foi ao contrário. :)

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