Sunday, April 25, 2010

The Road

The road is long and some days it seems to stretch to infinity. Today was probably the first day that Ireland felt like home to me instead of a sentence. I noticed that the ache of homesickness was completely gone.

When your heart is broken people tell you that slowly but surely the pain will ebb away until one day you will wake up and realize that it is gone. I feel like missing Canada has been similar. After the initial rush of novelty and excitement wore off from the move I was left with a knot in my stomach. A knot that was a constant reminder that I was a stranger. I was no longer surrounded by the landscape of people and places I loved.

I took this photo last summer while I was driving back to BC. It is one of my favorites because it shows two of my geographical allegiances; the prairies of Alberta where I grew up and the mountains of British Columbia where I now call home.   It seems that Ireland too will resonate within a part of me when my journey takes me back home.


E. Greene said...

It seems like it must be such a life-altering experience to go to medical school, let alone in another country. Are there a lot of international students in your program?

Albinoblackbear said...

Right now there are about 55 Canadians at various stages of medical school here on campus.

Yes, I would say that combining the move to a new country and starting medical school is in the stratosphere of "crazy stressful".

But when given the alternative which was to go through the application process for another year in Canada, it seemed like the much better option.


E. Greene said...

Plus, you'll come back to Canada knowing all about craic.

Grumpy, M.D. said...

I went to med school in a state VERY different, geographically, culturally, and weather, from my home. It was a big adjustment.

But now that I am home, I still miss that city. It's a part of me. Soemtimes I think of taking a few days of going there, just by myself, to revisit the person I once was.

OMDG said...

I missed Chicago for THREE YEARS after I moved here. I did not like Philadelphia at all. Now, I've found I like it ok. I feel like I've put down roots, and really? The weather here IS a lot better than Chicago's.

I'm glad you've settled in so quickly in your new country. I can only imagine what a shock it must have been to start med school in a totally different country.

Albinoblackbear said...

EG--Hahah, yes. Actually, it *almost* makes the tuition differential worth it. The colorful addition of adjectives, slang, cuss words, verbs to my of the biggest things I love about being here.

I am so glad that Tobie is here with me so at least someone in Canada will understand when I say things like, "that minger waiter was a total wagon".

Grump--Yeah, I suppose when you live in a place for a very specific period in your life those memories get suspended in the streets and buildings you leave behind.

It will be interesting to come back here 5, 10, 20 years later and find those ghosts in my old haunts.

OMDG--Well I feel the settling in is still a work in progress, just noticed that today as I looked around on my walk I felt connected in a different and pleasant way that I hadn't before. :)

I really hope that I don't fall completely in love with Ireland a few months before I go. Seems like 3 years is a long time to wait to find a place ok. Glad the weather is at least an improvement! (And cherry tree blossoms on your steps!)

Anonymous said...

That is a beautiful picture ABB. I feel your pain to some extent. I came to the Midwest for undergrad and I've been here for over 10 years. There are some things I like, the small towns and the friendly people, but mostly I'm still as desperate to leave (especially in the winter!!!) as the first night I rolled into This Place. I still dream about my home in the West sometimes. Two more years...

Josiah O. Morris said...

Oh, my. That photo looks like some place I want to be...and how. About the only noticeable elevation changes here are on a few golf courses. Can't wait to l e a v e.

I'm really pleased to hear that Ireland is feeling like home to you now! What a fantastic experience it must be, and something you'll surely look back upon with great fondness as the years pass =)

Albinoblackbear said...

Ninja--Thanks, it kinda makes me homesick so I just look at it out of the corner of my eye with my head turned to the side. :)

Ah dreaming, interesting. I don't have dreams of home very often...probably because I was on the road so much for the past 2 years and didn't have much for a fixed address.

Are you hoping to pack up and go as soon as you are done your MD?

JOM--Funny how most of my regular readers have the theme of displacement in their lives! Wonder if that is a coincidence or if wanderlusts naturally bond together? Hahahah. Interesting...

I think I will have more fondness for the place once I am at home in Canada again. You know how it is. I think part of me settling in a bit is that I have been spending more time with Irish folks than Canadians lately. And that always guarantees savage craic! ;)