7 May 2015

Reverse Culture Shock

Despite being told many times, one thing I was definitely not prepared for when coming home was reverse culture shock. This is not to say that I had forgotten how to function in the western world, but rather I underestimated how easy it is to fall back into routine and feel as though the last 3 months never happened. I have already bored people to death with my tales of my time away and referring back to 'while I was in Zambia', however, I have realised this is not to boast about my travelling exploits in front of my friends but rather to remind myself that it actually happened. With no real tangible proof of my time in Zambia, apart from digitally stored photos and new Facebook friends it's hard not to think back and constantly talk about my experiences as there is no other way of proving that they happened.

Nevertheless, reverse culture shock doesn't always have to be a bad thing. Although I was very much aware of it before, the experience has accentuated how truly petty a lot of people's problems are. A perfect example emphasising my opinion occurred last week when a woman phoned into BBC Radio 2 just to complain about how she has to visit various shops, other than Tesco, just to buy cheaper beans. It was not the subject matter that annoyed me the most but rather the fact that she went through the whole process of phoning into a radio show just to complain about something so small.

This has all led me wanting to continue playing my part as a global citizen by carrying on international voluntary work. Not only does it let me do something good with my time, leaving a positive impact on people's lives, but also allows me to become invested in and experience new cultures.

Next destination... South Asia.

Luke T.

(Bonus picture of my 'traditional' Zambian painting I purchased)

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