I am not a Refugee. I have not left my country, exiled for reasons so utterly terrifying that you wouldn't believe me even if I tried to explain.
I am an expatriate. Someone who is privileged to live in another country for work reasons. I am privileged to explore the world at will, rather than forced to travel out of necessity.
|Same ground, different footing.|
To those that are in exile, I am grateful for what you have taught me.The best privilege yet, has been to meet some amazing people from a multitude of backgrounds and cultures in the two countries that I have lived in away from my home, the UK. And I have yet to meet more gracious and lovely people than the friends who fled Sri Lanka for example, or the countless others we have met along the way, who had to leave home behind.
We all have one thing in common “us foreigners”. A special skill, only granted to you when you have been a foreigner yourself. A kind of inbuilt radar system that alerts us to mutual “strangers” in the vicinity, whether on a train, or just passing each other in the supermarket. When it’s activated, you might see us smiling at each other, for we have a mutual understanding of what it feels like to be different, and to not truly belong. In this respect at least we are always the same, despite our backgrounds and cultural variations.
~ Written for the Strangers in Strange Lands series. When not taking in the delights of Copenhagen with her family, Emma can be found on A Bavarian Sojourn.