Reverse culture shock

You feel more versed, more experienced. You remember adjusting to the new culture, the new way of life and the jet lag that came from your long flight. The good news is that you have already experienced this and dealt with it, but now you are going to have to do it all over again.

You arrive home but it doesn’t feel like home. You know that you have changed but so has your home. Walking once familiar streets feels different and foreign. Even your friends are different. It is like you do not even know them anymore. What is happening to you? You are experiencing reverse culture shock. This has been documented by many publications and affects people to varying degrees. You have just experienced an amazing adventure full of challenges and stories. You just discovered how easy it was to move from city to city, and country to country. When you got bored of a place, you would just move to another. There you would make quick friends for a couple of days and start exploring and adventuring all the interesting spots. If you like your new place you would stay as long as you liked or if another opportunity presented itself you would jump on that next bus or train and start something new.

What to do now that you are back at home and not in some exotic location. Instead of a hostel, you have an apartment or your family’s house. As for travelling to new cities on a whim, you are now stuck in one place for much longer than a week. Your friends have changed only slightly while you have grown so much in experience. No matter how good you are at telling your adventure stories, your friends just cannot relate to what you have experienced. You find that day to day, everything happens at a much slower pace than what you are used to. It seems that you have been travelling at 100 kilometres per hour, only to wake up the next day and find yourself down to a slow trot. Welcome to the reality of reverse culture shock or the backpacker’s hangover!