Being a stranger in a new place is a daunting prospect but when you add it to being a stranger in a foreign place far off from your homeland, daunting takes on a whole new level. The scenery, weather, people, culture, everything is spectacularly different. Whether you are a student living away from your family or an employee in a new job, coming to a new place is always filled with challenges.
Meeting new people and getting used to the weather is difficult enough, along with dealing with homesickness and exotic food. Getting accepted in society is the biggest challenge. Clothes, accent, fashion and lifestyle choices are something that can be changed but people’s perception of you can’t be altered. It is rather understandable perhaps, that people prefer to spend time with their own countrymen. There is a sense of familiarity and warmth in them and there is no hassle of having to understand a foreigner’s culture and language and thinking about saying something that would seem offensive. Conversing in a language that is not natural also enhances the barriers between a foreigner and a native. Comprehension is less and the person probably takes less home than what you intended to convey.
But from a foreigner’s view, living in a strange city, perhaps in a different continent, is frightening. With no friends and acquaintances, it is a lonely time. Every newcomer only seeks to fit in and blend in with the crowd. To be included and treated as an equal instead of being looked upon as an unwelcome outsider. He has left his home in hopes of offering something to that place and aspires taking home some new experiences and life lessons. When you find yourself alone and people can’t be bothered to give you a second glance is when the reality sinks in and the hopes of meeting new people and gaining exposure are shattered. You walk alone.
We may be too young to have the mental maturity to understand and sympathize with what an outsider so wholly unconnected with us is feeling but perhaps making an effort would not be so bad. It requires a little effort but it will definitely brighten up the poor chaps day. All we need is a little love, be it at home or elsewhere.