Words: Yours truly • Photos: David • Location: Stewart Lane, Penang
If you’ve been following my activities on Instagram, you’d know that since my previous blog I’ve left the UK and travelled to five different countries; Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Malaysia, and Indonesia where I am now… and like all my other homecoming trips, I had to make a pit-stop in Penang – after all, I’m half a Penangite!
Before I embarked on this (yet another) very eye-opening trip, a few people started asking me questions about my experience as a person living far away from their family… so I’ll be sharing all my answers this #TravelTuesday!
… But first, where is home?
If you’re new to my blog or have no idea what my nationality and/or ethnicity is, I recommend that you read my blog on what it means to be Malaysian.
one Do you miss Malaysia?
The quick answer is yes, and all the time.
I’ve always been my own person and very independent, but still, every now and then I get a pang of homesickness and longing for familiar faces – it doesn’t get easier, and you never get used to it. It’s really a bittersweet battle, constantly. I’m also very lucky that I’ve been able to create some pretty special memories with my family when I do see them. So when I leave, I always have something to remember and relish, and keep me going for another year or until I’m home again.
two What do you miss most about it?
This is where most Malaysians would say “food”, but for me, it’s the faces and places. (Although food is right up there on my list, too.)
One of my earliest memories growing up in Malaysia was the regular visits with my mum to Penang (usually to see my islander relatives), a tradition that I was able recreate on this trip – this time we brought along my niece and nephew. For me personally, it was a very nostalgic trip; one that I was glad we were able to go on as a three-generation family, which made it that much more special.
three How do you deal with homesickness?
Living thousands of miles away from home doesn’t make me any less ‘close’ to my family.
Thanks to modern technology, I get to stay in touch with my family and keep up with all happenings at home. I speak with my mum regularly so I never have to miss any juicy drama. During the past few months leading up to the big trip, I’d chat to everyone back home almost daily to plan our family outing to Kuching… so yes, Facebook and Messenger definitely make homesickness a little more bearable – even when you’re halfway across the world!
What about you? Have you ever lived abroad (or just a long way away from home) and how do you deal with homesickness that comes with flying the nest?
I look forward to hearing from you, so share your tips below and I’ll be sure to respond to them!