How Living In Another Country Changes Your Perspective


Ellie Keller

What comes to mind when you hear Australia? A tall, blonde, muscular surfer dude saying, “G’day mate?” Chris Hemsworth? Margot Robbie? While I would love for that to be accurate, the hard truth is that the majority of Australians, like most people who live in other countries, are just normal people. Experiencing what life and the people are really like in another country really changes your perspective about yourself and the world.

One of the things I realized while abroad was that different countries have different mindsets. Money seems to be a driving factor for Americans, and we typically have very busy and fast-paced lives. It is definitely very different in Australia, the country where I stayed. They have a break for tea at least every three to four hours, and no one really seems to wear a watch. 

Homesickness is an interesting thing about leaving because you start to miss the weirdest and most specific things.  It’s easy to take for granted good live music and the fresh tortillas from HEB. Texans don’t realize how lucky we are to have HEB. I guess missing home never completely goes away. The person I stayed with was from Fredericksburg, and even though she has lived in Australia for 30 years, she still thinks of Texas as home.

We DO have accents. I had never realized it before and always just thought most people in Texas had regular American accents, but when I got back I could definitely hear it. Even though y’all is a valid contraction and more states should use it, it definitely sets us apart from the rest of the world. Foreign countries also pay way more attention to America and its politics than we do for other countries. Almost half the time the news on the TV in Australia was about the United States.

Living in another country makes the world feel a lot smaller. Having experienced life thousands of miles away and knowing that everyone is going through similar problems really puts things in perspective. There are a lot of preconceived notions about people from foreign countries, but for the most part people are pretty similar everywhere.