Not Goodbye, Just “Vi Ses!”
Taylor just recently returned from a year-long individual Quest to Copenhagen, Denmark. She stayed with a host family and spent her time teaching at a school in the Filipskolen community. Taylor chronicled her time abroad on her blog, A Writer’s Wanderlust. Enjoy her ode to a city that she loves and the cross-cultural relationships she formed there.
“Life might be difficult for a while, but I would tough it out because living in a foreign country is one of those things everyone should try at least once. My understanding was that it completed a person, sanding down the rough edges and transforming you into a citizen of the world”
– David Sedaris
Denmark I’m leaving a piece of me with you today; a large part of my heart will remain here in Copenhagen while I carry a part of Denmark back to the states (and then Poland) with me. I will
carry the memories made and lessons learned here with me always, using them as I travel the world. And despite what some might say, I will always love Denmark the most; there will be other countries that I love, that I adore, and that I live in…but there will never be another Denmark.
You have shaped me into a different person. A more adventurous, spontaneous, assertive woman who now knows what she wants, what she’s capable of, and where her dreams can take her. My year in Denmark has become the foundation for the rest of my life.
To my two host families – you were both phenomenal. I’m incredibly fortunate that our senses of humor matched up and that I felt included into both of your families and am so grateful that you both were always there to help me when I needed it, listened when I had a problem, and let me cry it out when it got a little overwhelming. The memories I made with both of my host families will be ones that I carry around and laugh about for the rest of my life. I truly feel like I’ve gained two new parts of my family. You both have done so much for me and have opened my eyes to a new way of living and a completely different culture. It is because of both of my host families that I have taken to Denmark in the way that I have and completely embraced the eccentricities of the Scandinavian culture.
To all of my new Danish/International friends. Your hearts are larger than life and your warmth knows no bounds. I’ve learned so much from you all this year and I’m glad that we all got the chance to take this crazy ICYE journey together. I’ll never forget it. From my birthday, each ICYE camp, Hamlet’s Castle, and every coffee/dinner/drink get together in between – you all kick ass and I’ve enjoyed every minute that I’ve gotten to get to know you all and cause a bit of mischief along the way. Wherever I am in the world you all always have a place to stay with me.
To all of my fellow teachers at Filipskolen – you all are phenomenal and you have taught me more than you’ll ever know. Each of you offer a different perspective to teaching and classroommanagement and this year was a crash course in my future profession. While you were teaching the students you were also teaching me and I will always be beyond grateful for everything you’ve done for me. From day one you treated me as an equal, as a fellow teacher, and you always took my ideas/concerns/suggestions seriously. I’m so incredibly thankful for how included you made me feel and I will always consider myself part of the Filipskolen family.
Here’s to new beginnings, old memories, and all of the great possibilities that the future will hold. I am a new person because of this last year and I am invigorated for all that is to come. Thank you Denmark, you have truly healed my soul.