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10 Things You Miss When You’re Abroad

When you’re abroad, you tend to miss things from back at home. Sometimes, these are the things you thought you would miss, so there’s no surprise when you whip out the comfort food and have a good sob fest. Other times, you miss things you never even thought were things that warranted missing. Here are ten things you miss when you’re abroad.


1. YOUR CAR.

Bought for your sixteenth birthday – cause your parents couldn’t be bothered driving you to your BFF Macie’s house every afternoon – there was more to that banged up box on wheels than just somewhere to store your shoe collection. It was a gleaming symbol of freedom. The freedom to choose where you wanted to go and the freedom to be in whatever state of dress (or undress – because no one knows if you’re not wearing pants) you desired. It’s no wonder you sometimes get a little misty-eyed when you’re crammed onto public transport.

2. YOUR LANGUAGE.

Asking the shop attendant to repeat what they’ve said to you in Spanish for a THIRD time can leave you feeling like a broken record. In those brief moments, you can start to pine for the days when communication was more simple… and you knew how to ask for directions.

Even English-speaking people living in another English-speaking country will miss their home lingo from time to time. Cause sometimes it’s too awks as an Australian to try and explain what you meant when you said you “went on a Maccas run in your tracky-dacks”.

3. YOUR FRIENDS.

Though your buds tag you in a TONNE of funny cat memes and chat to you almost every waking minute, you still find yourself missing their goofy grins. It’s totes understandable. When it comes to nights out and outfit planning, these guys know you best. If only they were still just down the street here in Dublin, too.

4. YOUR SPORTING COMMUNITY.

Exchange is going all well and good, except for one teensy problem. Your host country has never even heard of American Football, let alone praise-be-all gods that are (in your star struck opinion) the Philadelphia Eagles. You’ve got zero fellow supporters. Zero hype. And you have to live stream the footage instead of watching it with you mates at a local bar. Somehow, it just doesn’t feel the same. 

5. YOUR COUNTRY’S HOLIDAYS.

Remember all those times you dressed up Michelle Pfeiffer’s Catwoman for Halloween? Well, it won’t be happening this year. And that’s not just because you spilt wine on it that one time. It’s because your host country doesn’t celebrate Halloween. Or Thanksgiving. Which leaves you stuck at home scrolling through everyone’s holiday celebrations on Facebook, nibbling on your own roast turkey leg.

6. YOUR BEDROOM.

Though you love your new overseas setup, nothing quiet seems to beat the familiar comforts of your bedroom back home. The coconut-scented candles. The mismatched pillows. The crooked blinds that never quite seemed to block out the morning sunlight… It can be easy to miss that – especially since your old bedroom boasted a TV.

7. YOUR FAMILY.

You only need to LOOK at a tuna casserole – aka your mum’s signature dish – for that bottom lip to start quivering. And you’ve practically had to forbid yourself from walking on the same side of the street as owners walking their German Shepard’s (the same breed as your pooch), least you start flooding the streets with your tears. Homesickness one; independence nil.

8. YOUR COUNTRY’S FOOD.

If you’ve known upon leaving home that there would be no pop-tarts in France, then you’ve packed a whole suitcase FULL of the sugar-filled goodness. Alas, you were caught unawares. As it is, you’re stuck sucking sugar cubes.

9. YOUR COUNTRY’S WEATHER.

Spotting an Australian in the middle of a European winter is simple. They’re the ones wearing ten layers of winter clothing, reminiscing through chattering teeth the days when “cold” was anything under 18°C. They’re also the ones glaring up at the unrelenting blanket of greyish-coloured clouds, praying for a sunny, blue-skied miracle.

10. YOUR OLD JOB.

It’s weird. Three months ago, you couldn’t wait to get out of that place. It smelt like disinfectant, the customers ran you in circles and the inspirational cat poster in the break room just made you downright uncomfortable. But now you find yourself pondering the good ol’ days when you had that kooky old job. At least then you were earning money.

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Chloe Ranford

Chloe is an Australian journalism student who has just completed the last semester of her Bachelor of Journalism degree as an International Exchange Student at Sheffield Hallam University (SHU), England. She currently writes articles on her experiences as an exchange student for Rakbo and QUT Gone Global.


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