The human mind is incredible in its ability to adapt. In the last two weeks I’ve made daily routines, discovered new definitions of normal, and somehow found myself feeling comfortable living life in a foreign country. That doesn’t mean everything is easy (I’m definitely still faced with challenges on a daily basis), I’ve just already grown and developed in ways I couldn’t imagine when our plane first landed in Vietnam.
A big factor in this change of perspective has been starting my internship. My days are now occupied with work, and tourism is saved for evenings and weekends, so I’ve been able to grow professionally as well as personally. Working in the development sector is an amazing opportunity to learn more about how my studies can translate to making a real impact for people, and I’m learning this while being an active participant. In these first two weeks I’ve written a proposal for a development project to improve clean water access in Vietnam, and I’m excited to see what the next four weeks will hold.
With this shift towards a working life in Vietnam, I’ve found myself getting too comfortable at times, and no longer noticing all the incredible things around me. Then something new catches my attention, and I’m reminded how special it is to be here. One of these moments was when we went to a local market and there was a show on. Women were dressed in their traditional ao dai, and the music and dancing was so different to anything I’ve seen in New Zealand. We stopped to just take it all in, and it was like I fell in love with Vietnam all over again. It’s great to find a new way of living everyday life, but I also want to hold on to the child-like joy of appreciating my surroundings and discovering something new every day.