The bus ride from the airport was very relaxing. Denmark was still green and lush at that time of the year. Such a beautiful landscape! I was tired but curious. Curious to see what made this country unique and different. I sat by the window to have a clear view of the land. The atmosphere in the bus was serene, quiet and everyone kept to themselves, no one spoke to the other, unlike my homeland. I sat sipping in the whole new sight in my head and enjoying the new world that stared before me. Barely unknown, strange were the thoughts playing on my mind. A sting of fear on how things would turn out engulfed me. However, one thing remained sure; this was going to be an adventure of a life time with accompanying challenges and opportunities.
On arriving my final destination, Aarhus, the second largest city in Denmark also popularly called a student city, I was taken to my hall of residence known as ‘Kollegium’ in Danish. I sat on my bed and quietly whispered a prayer of gratitude to God for safe arrival. With a heavy sigh of both exhaustion and relief, I welcomed myself to a new life in Denmark. Who said that relocation to another country was going to be any easy? I would put in all my energy to explore this new world, I told myself. My hope was kindled and I prayed that this change will usher in new accomplishments.
This is change.
It comes in diverse ways and medium. At that point when things become different, at that point when we relocate, change jobs, end or start new relationships, become a parent, graduate from school, or move on to a higher education, move house, begin to invest, take new vocations and the list is endless, we are welcoming change into our lives. Handling these occurrences as they come is most vital for a general well-being.
When positive change occurs, catch in on the challenges and opportunities it presents. Every change come with new responsibility, a new lifestyle, a new system, a new phase, and a new vision. In which ever case, with any kind of change, there are adjustments to make with it.
The whole process of settling into a new culture can be cumbersome. I got my first baptism into this new world with the welcome by the harsh wave of cold on my body. It was a strange feeling. I mean, it was a naked reality that indeed I was in a new land. That was in October when the autumn was getting to a close.
For someone like me who lived in the tropical part of the world, the difference was clear. The climate was a sharp contrast to the scorching sun that I was used to in the bustling city of Lagos, Nigeria. I had to exchange the beads of sweat that roll down my cheeks in the hot sun, as I go about life in my wonderful homeland, for the unfriendly cold winter in my new world. It was a painful slap on my skin that made me shiver like one struck with malaria.
And that was the first culture shock.
The changes I encountered brings me to the reality that knowledge is a continuous process. There are always some significant differences about a people and a society; these are seen in their lifestyle, language, education system, food, beliefs about marriage, children, family and morality. I will not dissipate energy to emphasize on the above. Perhaps, I would do so at a later date.
“Any change, even a change for the better, is always accompanied
by drawbacks and discomforts.” – Arnorld Bennett.
New education system!
I grappled with a new language. Danish!
I got new wardrobe essentials.
A new friendship and network!
I embraced them all. I had to plunge myself into the new order because I stepped out of my comfort zone. Almost everything was new and different. The only common thing I would say was the air I breathe. And even the air too, I believed, was not entirely the same.
And I recalled my life as a baby, without any knack, a tiny little creature, whose only interest was to be suckled. Unaware of the environment which I was born into, I grew through a process of changes, transformations, growth in diverse areas signally the fact that change is constant.
Thus far, it has been a path filled with many memories both good and bad. I have changed in many different ways from a little toddler to the adult that I have become. The journey has been fraught with experiences, opportunities and challenges. Every stage of this walk in life has taught me different lessons which have made me the strong, unassuming person that I am today.