Moving back to Aotearoa New Zealand
I’m flying back to Aotearoa tomorrow after moving to Sweden to study followed by a 2.5-year unplanned detour to Norway. I want to leave some reflections here about this particular transition. But I’m struggling to find the words. How can I express the ways that the pandemic’s presence and being dislocated from home and having…
I’m starting a podcast
Meet me at the intersections of disability, migration and culture.
The year that never ends has almost ended. Here are some reflections.
April 2020 was a strange moment to move north of the Arctic circle. Almost all of my international friends who could were finding their way home, wherever that meant for them. I was no exception—at least if I classify a home location as “wherever my parents are”, which I am privileged to be able to…
When does one feel at home living somewhere new? The question surely yields as many answers as there are people who’ve ever found themselves trying to capture the essence of home, once it outgrows the notion of being tied to a single house. I’ll explore some of the ways I’ve started to find a home…
After the rain – my first month in Sweden
A few days before class on my way home, I step off the train to discover a deluge. I have over a kilometre to walk, I’m wearing shorts and a light windbreakder, and the water gods are having a ball. The cold, unrelenting pelts are all I can hear and feel and I try not…
My Faithful Travel Companion
As a familiar Irish lilt comes to life in a pub in Sweden I have never visited, I want to cry. Instead I pick up my flute to join in. This is the Irish trad (or traditional) session culture – all you need is a space (preferably a pub to quench the thirst), a…
Leaving a trace through Gothenburg
It’s a balmy day by Gothenburg summer standards, 20°C and not too windy. Four of us, two Kiwis and two Finns, pause outside a café on a bustling Gothenburg street, long enough for me to register it’s the first café I’ve been to in Sweden. “I wonder if they have kanelbular here. The cinnamon buns?’’…
Nothing says välkommen quite like housemates who haven’t met you yet but all come out to pick you up at the airport anyway. You get back at 9pm, They show you around your room and the next day make you Swedish pancakes and smoothy for brunch. I’ll spare you the accommodation search saga for now…
When in doubt, investigate
“You should study abroad,” they said. “It’ll be good for you. My parents met when both were overseas, and I’ve been reminded more than once that without that prerequisite, neither I nor my brother would exist. I’m not a chick reticent about fleeing the nest, but figuring out what I wanted to pursue…