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Old 03.05.2015, 16:14
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Homesick in Luzern

I'm sitting here in Luzern and quite frankly don't know what to do. I am a Registered Nurse from the U.S. and I am so terribly homesick. I left Brooklyn as a newlywed, overjoyed with the knowledge of moving here. We couldn't wait to travel and enjoy all the Swissness. However now my husband and I are yearning for the familiar. I attend German class every day currently at B1 level and my husband picked up a part time job on the weekends. I'm still awaiting my B permit to arrive. Perhaps it's too early to make a decision but I feel like jumping ship and going home to NY. A major factor of stress is this 2 year apartment lease that we signed. I feel trapped. It was our fault for signing this thing so early in the game but I hope the landlord might be understanding if we find someone to replace us and leave early?

Does anyone have any advice or have gone through something similar? I've also been looking for part-time work while I study German. I've created babysitting profiles but no luck so far. Any and all feedback is greatly appreciated.

Sincerely,
Feeling Out of Place
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Old 03.05.2015, 16:44
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Re: Homesick in Luzern

Hi,

How long have you been in Lucerne? Have you been able to make any friends yet? There are some groups you can find on meetup, Internations, Facebook for Lucerne. Of course those might be more expat oriented groups but they are a good start I think.

Zentral Switzerland is a beautiful place but maybe not the easiest to start with here in Switzerland. I am myself are originally from here but have lived abroad for a long time and it is not easy for me to fit in again.

If you guys feel like going out for a drink or so in Lucerne and chat just pm me.

Good luck.
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Old 03.05.2015, 16:47
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Re: Homesick in Luzern

Give yourself at least 1 year before deciding to move back to the US. It takes time and perseverance....but then you'll enjoy it and forget the difficulties you had.
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Old 03.05.2015, 17:05
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Re: Homesick in Luzern

If it's your first time moving abroad, give it time. It isn't easy and it's a long-term project - it's actually hard to prepare for all the mixed feelings that come with moving to another country. I agree with definitely giving it a year before calling it quits. It's normal to feel like this at some point, but don't give up.

If you don't mind me asking, what did you come over for? What is your situation? If none of you are working full time it only makes it worse - you have more time to contemplate how much nicer life back home was. You signed a 2 year lease so you must have had some sort of game plan.

Summer will be here soon, I suggest you make plans to do things that one can't do back home, go on short weekend trips to some of the amazing European cities, experience the different parts of CH and most of all, keep yourself busy. It's very easy to feel discouraged if you have nothing to do all day except studying German for a couple of hours. There are plenty of clubs and organisations to join.
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Old 03.05.2015, 17:30
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Re: Homesick in Luzern

ok brooklyn girl. that's a tough situation but it's not the worst. does your husband work on the weekends and during the week? so you're on your own most of the time? that's tough but maybe you can use that weekend time to travel a bit on your own- get to know other areas in switzerland- and people.

i've only visited lucerne, it's a beautiful town, but i didn't feel that there were a ton of english speakers or life going on (i could be wrong). a two year lease goes faster than you think so take the time to concentrate on learning the language and just start to find an activity to get yourself in a community a bit. don't worry about the language- try sports, pottery, whatever you can find and just show up, do it and the language will come faster and with desire. you're at a low point, it happens to us all, but it'll get better. and if you feel very homesick, you can always come to lausanne and meet another borough girl (bronx!) and i'll show you around lausanne a bit. it's slightly more exciting feel and it's always nice to have a change of scenery. the good side is that spring is on it's way (once the rain stops ) and once it comes for good you'll feel much more positive about the place youre living. get involved, don't stress about the language, and time will fly. then you can decide what you want to do and where you want to be.
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Old 03.05.2015, 17:31
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Re: Homesick in Luzern

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Hi,

How long have you been in Lucerne? Have you been able to make any friends yet? There are some groups you can find on meetup, Internations, Facebook for Lucerne. Of course those might be more expat oriented groups but they are a good start I think.

Zentral Switzerland is a beautiful place but maybe not the easiest to start with here in Switzerland. I am myself are originally from here but have lived abroad for a long time and it is not easy for me to fit in again.

If you guys feel like going out for a drink or so in Lucerne and chat just pm me.

Good luck.
i've heard that from a few swiss friends! that once they left for a couple of years to go abroad they had to pretty much find new friends once they came back...
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Old 03.05.2015, 17:48
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Re: Homesick in Luzern

Firstly, thanks so much to all of you! It really means a lot to receive such wonderful replies!

We have been here for 3 months now and I actually really like it here. We moved to this area because my husband previously lived in Bern and had a good friend moving out to Luzern. So we decided to follow along. My husband was living in CH when we first were dating and it was just always a dream of mine to live in Europe so we took a chance really. (I was also so completely fed up with the healthcare system in the US and wanted the opportunity to work in Switzerland's hospitals, gain a new perspective.) My ultimate goal is to get a year experience in a hospital here, hence the 2 year lease.

I've had frequent sprach-tandem meet ups, joined a gym, and eventually will join one of the neighborhood clubs. It helps a lot to be out and about. It's just when I get home it all comes back. Just getting antsy I suppose since I went from a full-time nurse in a hospital to a stay at home wife :/

The lack of B permit is also limiting me. I would love nothing more than to hop on the trains and go exploring but unfortunately without my B permit I can't purchase a halbtax yet. No handy abonement either butttttt guess I just have to keep pushing forward like you all are saying and just try to enjoy the ride.

Thank you everyone, you sure know how to cheer an expat up
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Old 03.05.2015, 18:02
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Re: Homesick in Luzern

Being overjoyed at moving far away is never a good thing, the landing is crushing :-)

The frustration, the missing of old, familiar friends, the strange new people who do not speak your language and are already set in their ways - e.g. have no real need to make new friends. The frustrating feeling of talking like a small child and not being able to come across as your real, adult, funny, smart and endearing self: It happened to me when I moved to the Island of Manhattan.

I went there to study for a year, moved in with two american girls (room size 5 square meters, including some mice) and had vowed to myself to not read and speak German for at least half a year. I only took the Thesaurus as a reference book. The first half year, I was always tired, sometimes frustrated, detected my deep european roots which I had not believed existent - and still enjoyed the city a lot, even if I did not make many friends and felt alone and strange very often.
I was really rigid with myself: No German at all, only strange talkshows in TV to get the slang right. And for the good English some good movies I got at Lincoln Library every saturday. I didn't allow self-pity - just allowed myself a good weep once in a while :-)

After half a year on this diet, my language skills had dramatically improved and all of a sudden, many things began to change. To make it short - I'm still friends with one of my roommates and some other smart and fun manhattanites. I had wandered the island, walked to the Bronx, to Coney Island, City Island and everywhere else.

When I returned a year later to see friends, I realized for the first time HOW HARD it had been in my first half year and I was absolutely proud of myself how I had survived it, being all alone. I still love Manhattan, I learned strange customs, I got myself a great reputation till this day as a cook, because I could cook from scratch. Something I had considered normal till my american days :-)

Talk to people at a bus stop, at the cashiers, even if your German is not up to par, do not let yourself be stopped by reactions you are not familiar with. Tell them you want to improve your German. Courage is the word. There is always volunteer work https://www.benevol-jobs.ch, http://caritas-luzern.ch/p81000889.html. just visit them iif you do not understand the website fully. They will probably like it.

Hope that helps you somewhat!

Last edited by marischi; 03.05.2015 at 20:39.
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Old 03.05.2015, 19:59
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Re: Homesick in Luzern

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The lack of B permit is also limiting me. I would love nothing more than to hop on the trains and go exploring but unfortunately without my B permit I can't purchase a halbtax yet. No handy abonement either butttttt guess I just have to keep pushing forward like you all are saying and just try to enjoy the ride.

Thank you everyone, you sure know how to cheer an expat up
No need for a B permit to get a halbtax, unless something's changed in the last few years. I remember just needing my passport and getting some photos taken - there's an instant photo booth in Luzern Bahnhof right in front of the SBB office.
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Old 03.05.2015, 20:11
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Re: Homesick in Luzern

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I'm sitting here in Luzern and quite frankly don't know what to do. I am a Registered Nurse from the U.S. and I am so terribly homesick. I left Brooklyn as a newlywed, overjoyed with the knowledge of moving here. We couldn't wait to travel and enjoy all the Swissness. However now my husband and I are yearning for the familiar. I attend German class every day currently at B1 level and my husband picked up a part time job on the weekends. I'm still awaiting my B permit to arrive. Perhaps it's too early to make a decision but I feel like jumping ship and going home to NY. A major factor of stress is this 2 year apartment lease that we signed. I feel trapped. It was our fault for signing this thing so early in the game but I hope the landlord might be understanding if we find someone to replace us and leave early?

Does anyone have any advice or have gone through something similar? I've also been looking for part-time work while I study German. I've created babysitting profiles but no luck so far. Any and all feedback is greatly appreciated.

Sincerely,
Feeling Out of Place


Take the train in and visit the American Women's Club of Zurich, it has a clubhouse, an english library, video rental and a lot of fun things to do. I am a NYER and if you want PM me and we can meet up, I have been an expat of 27 years and understand your pain. It CAN be fun to be here. You just need to give it a bit. If it too complicated for you to get here, I can visit you in Lucerne, haven't been in a while and it is soo pretty !
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  #11  
Old 03.05.2015, 20:20
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Re: Homesick in Luzern

Summer on the way, give it a couple of months before making a jump .. The winter can be bleak. Volunteer or join a few groups to practice your newly found German skills
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Old 04.11.2015, 16:00
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Re: Homesick in Luzern

Hi brooklyngirl ...and others
...fairly new here I guess?

The event on the 19. Oct was really fun!!! lots of nice people and a great view from Chateau Gütsch on "downtown" Luzern

Everybody says it is difficult to find friends here. I disagree!!! I think it is really easy!!!
But since so many people say that, I figured I would lend “the new ones” a hand, just like you.

We participate in many events and meet lots of nice people. “We” includes my wife, lots of female friends, local friends and fun visitiors.

Here is the link: MeetUp Luzern where you want to push the "Join us" button.

Just for clarification. It is NOT a dating site nor does it cost any money, but you DO need to use a profile picture that looks like you and write why you want to join.
This in order to keep potential "weird or negative" people out. We do not want any of those and put effort into keeping the members safe. Many are like family to us by now.

Come and say hi and I will introduce you to the others. Nice of me, right?

See you soon..and feel free to bring a friend or 2 ... Husbands included!

Leif
Head of MeetUp Luzern
PS My name is pronounced “life” as in Life is wonderful
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Old 04.11.2015, 16:51
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Re: Homesick in Luzern

been here for 8 months now and kind of know the feeling.. i live in Basel and work in Zurich so most my days are eaten up by work/travel. Have yet to make any concrete friends of my own here but I think once i start going to play pick up hockey I'll get to know a few people. Uprooting most of your life (especially when you aren't the most sociable of people) can be very stressful and sometimes downright depressing. I'm lucky as I have someone here to travel with and take enjoyment out of seeing new parts of Switzerland and all around Europe.
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Old 04.11.2015, 17:17
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Re: Homesick in Luzern

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Old 04.11.2015, 20:15
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Re: Homesick in Luzern

Here it is http://www.meetup.com/de/Luzern-and-...d-Socializing/

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Old 12.11.2015, 15:04
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Re: Homesick in Luzern

Just wanted to follow up on this post for all of you who might now be finding yourselves in my previous shoes.

It gets better!

I wound up joining the Luzern Eagles Softball team and the summer really just took off for me. Got to meet a lot of great friends through this find. (If anyone is interested in baseball/softball for themselves or even for the lil guys, check out their website.) http://www.eagles-baseball.ch/

I also started using http://sprach-tandem.ch/de/home. You can exchange languages. A laid back way of learning and practicing a new language. The idea is simple: meet for a coffee and trade your native languages with each other. (English and German are easy to find). The great thing about that site is the majority of people I have met through it are open-minded and awesome. Learning the language around you, really is an invaluable key to unlock the people around you

We've been here now for almost a year now and it's safe to say, I still will always have my days/weeks where I really miss home and just want to pack it all up. BUT, what I've really learned is that when moving abroad, you really need at least 1 year before making a decision. (As stated above.) A year might seem like a long time, but time has really flew and so many wonderful things have unfolded.


If anyone is feeling down and out, or has questions, feel free to PM me.

Take care!
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Old 12.11.2015, 17:29
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Re: Homesick in Luzern

You've found a boyfriend, haven't you
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Old 12.11.2015, 21:16
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Re: Homesick in Luzern

Careful...her husband might read EF too....
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You've found a boyfriend, haven't you
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