Things have been crazy these past couple of weeks so I decided to write a little update for you. Coming back to Tromso after having spent my summer in Denmark, Greenland and Germany wasn't easy. Especially not after spending my last days in Germany in Hamburg with the boyfriend. We had a nice time and the pure thought of having to go back to wintery, cold and grey Tromso was depressing.
Take that plus the thought of being homeless and jobless and you can pretty much imagine in what a messed up state of mind I was during my first week back in the city. Yes, you read that right. Homeless and jobless. To make things short, I was informed that my job contract was not getting extended one week prior to coming back to Tromso and I desperately wanted to move out of my flat share since spring basically. The fact that the flat hasn't been cleaned by my roomates for at least 3 weeks while I was away, didn't exactly make things easier.
So there I was. Not wanting to live in the mess that my flat was, I crashed at the boyfriend's and cried for almost 4 days straight. Abroad, without a home or a job, I felt like a total looser and the only thing I wanted to do was go back to Germany again. I swear, during the whole year that I've been living in Tromso now, I've never been so close to packing my things and moving back to my parent's house than at this point.
My first week in Tromso was hell, I think you can imagine that. And as much as I wanted to throw in the towel, in the end I didn't. I'm going to be honest here, I have no idea how I did it. But somehow I managed to pull myself out of the situation, searched for a better place to live and moved houses 5 days after coming back to Tromso. It wasn't as easy as it might sound like though. I had a 2 month period of notice at my old place but luckily a landlord that was fine with me moving out - not without earning a whole lot of money on it but well, no idea what I would have done if that hadn't been the case.
It also was pure luck that I found a flat share with people I seem to get along with much better in a flat that is big, clean, modern and in a very nice neighbourhood just 2 mins from the ocean. As I mentioned in previous posts, the housing situation in Tromso is tough and I was really scared that I wouldn't find anything so the fact that I managed to actually find something close to perfect, definitely was pure luck!
As to the job, with the help of my boyfriend and after a whole day, I managed to write my first job application in Norwegian and also translated my CV. I'm pretty proud of myself that I've come so far as to actually be able to do that and even though I haven't found a real job yet and instead have to try to land some gigs as a tourist guide to earn at least a bit of money, I won't give up. I've made it so far so I'm going to find something eventually.
With the housing and job situation sorted out, I was finally able to focus on writing my MA thesis and blog posts again. I'm sorry for being absent on social media in early September and taking a week to reply to your comments but I guess, you understand why that was!
Anyway, the boyfriend and I have settled into life in Tromso again and try to make as much out of our weekends away from university as we can. We started going swimming once a week now and oh boy, it's so exhausting! I'll probably spend more time in the solarium than actually swimming but we'll see!
We also went on some walks in my new neighbourhood and around Tromso as the weather was really nice lately. It was unusually warm for autumn in the Arctic and we had a lot of sunshine (and Northern Lights!). Indian summer in Tromso is just so beautiful and these last days of summer were a much needed change after my grey and depressing first week back in the city!
I also went to Tromso Food Festival which was the best cure for my little autumn depression and now I'm looking forward to going on holiday next week! The boyfriend and I will be taking the Hurtigruten to go to Lofoten, rent a car there and explore the islands before heading to his parent's house near Bodo and maybe doing a day trip across the border to Sweden.... there's a silver lining, that's for sure!
I know, I've had and will probably also have some more rough times in Tromso in the future but now I know definitely that I'll get through it - no matter what life throws at me! Expat life isn't always easy and it's kind of ironic that Tromso treated me that way shortly after my 1 year expat-anniversary but that's just the way it is. Life always pulls the weirdest stunts when you can least deal with them. Only makes you stronger right?!
How has expat life treated you so far? Did you want pack your bags and go home at some point?