I was on my way home today from running errands and it suddenly struck me: Life is so different now from my days in the US! Although, even though many things are still new and foreign to me, the lack of a car does not phase me anymore. I used to drive everywhere, every single day, whether it was to class 35 miles away or a grocery store one mile down the road. The US is more spread out so in the parts of the country lacking in sufficient public transportation you need a car to get around. However, hopping into my car just to drive to a store right down the street instead of just walking never struck me as odd even when I grumbled over crazy drivers or the occasional lack of parking spaces.
That said, after I moved to Sweden, driving every time I had to go down the street to Walmart turned into speed walking or running 4+ miles a day, in sunshine, snow, or rain. Life changes in the most peculiar of ways, but in retrospect you begin to wonder how you ever lived differently:
How did you live without feeling the sun on your face or the wind in your hair or without feeling the overwhelming desire to step out of the cold to embrace a warm cup of coffee with your shivering hands? But it’s all quite wonderful, because whether we are cold or warm or immensely tired, every day we have the opportunity to step out into a vast world that we rarely lay our eyes on anymore and breathe in fresh air that would not have existed had this rock suspended in space not evolved in such an impeccable manner that it would one day become one big, beautiful life support system… It is nothing short of a miracle and it gives us every incentive to make the best of the diminutive time span we have been allotted.
We can make the best of it for ourselves by taking consistent steps outside of our comfort zone and toward our dreams, or for others by being an amicable person, or for the world as a whole by being conscious and respectful of everything around us whether it be nature, animals, or people of other cultures that we might not quite understand unless we try. We can succeed in any of the previously mentioned endeavors, but if we work exceptionally hard then we might just be able to do it all. 🙂