I love my roommates. They are the closest to family I have here. We take care of each other and try to make the best out of every situation. However all situations won't get better no matter what you do. We've really tried to make the situation in the house we live in better. By talking to the family, asking if we can do things and trying not to do anything wrong. (like not touching anything, never sitting in the livingroom, being quiet and respect every thing to an extreme point)

We eat vegetarian food every day with rice and if it's possible with a little bit more rice. There is alot of new and different rules here for us, but we haven't complained just tried to adapt.

Now, a cultural difference is one thing. Disrespecting us is another thing.

The grandmother in the family have laughed at my mistakes infront of everybody, she calls us "you people", if we touch her stuff she stops using it and she doesn't let us out of her sight if we're in the same room as her. She's very religious so what we eat with, can't be mixed with hers. So our plates, glasses and so on is and should always be placed on the end of the table on a towel. We can't wash our plates with the same things as her or use the same towel as her. I know that it is because of her religion so I'm trying to adapt.

By mistake I washed her spoon yesterday and she got so mad that she punch one of the objects in the kitchen. Today she told us that she wants to eat at the same time as her...

My roommate Aurore forgot to lock the door to the backyard after taking down her clothes from the washing line. (This is in the middle of the day and I still have my clothes hanging there). The grandmother storms into our room and says "You didn't lock the door!" while looking at me. I turn to Aurore and ask her if she forgot. Then I answer "She took her clothes but forgot to lock the door". The grandmother (still angry) says "you have to lock the door, if thieves come and shoot you". I don't even know what to respond to that. The fact that she's yelling at me and complaning every single fucking day, makes me more upset right now than if a bloody thief would hold a gun at me.

This grandmother comes into my room when I'm not at home and changes things. She doesn't say thank you if I say something like "Have a nice day", "I hope you feel better" and so on. Her respond to everything is okay.

Also and this feels really disrespectful to me, I've been here 3 weeks now and they have not even opened the gift I brought with me from Sweden yet.

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Today I got introduce to this (above). A traditional Mãori greeting, called hongi. It's very intimate but with so much respect that you feel comfortable. You pressing your nose and forhead against each others at the same time and "the breath of life" is exchanged. (both breathing out). Almost like sharing one's soul with the other person. He told me that this act is an agreement of trust. I read about it and found out that exchanging the hongi is the same as telling me that I'm no longer a visitor but one of the people of the land. It was really powerful.

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Welcome to the local shop, what we in Sweden would call a "kiosk". The biggest difference from a kiosk in Sweden and this one is that everybody knows everybody. Sam, one of the guys working here asked me for my name the second time he saw me there and wondered if I was new to the neighborhood. This is the second time in just a few days I've been asked where I'm from and if I live in the neighborhood. It's not that hard to figure out I guess. In this area me and my roommates stand out quite a bit. Here everybody is indian or maori. No europeans, no africans, no latinos, no americans. So a colombian girl, french girl and a swedish girl kind of stands out. Especially when we walk next to each other, with our different lengths, haircolors and accents. 

I like this shop, here there's always people talking to each other. The products are maybe not for me however. It contains nothing healthy really, only sweets, snacks and practical things like toothpaste and schampoo. But it has character.

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Kia Ora! (hi in Maori). These are some pictures from my city, Auckland. It's located in the northern island and it's the biggest city in New Zealand. Right now in September it rains a lot. A common thing people say here when it rains, is to wait 30 minutes. That is more or less how often the weather changes from rain to sunshine and I still haven't brought my lazy ass to a store and bought an umbrella... 

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I finished school 18.00 today and just after that the school had an activity called the Peter Pans Bingo. Through half the game I only had two numbers crossed off. So I had my eyes on the free pizza we were going to get after the game. Without really realizing it I had a two lined bingo and got one of the prices. This price scares me so much, but I'm determined to do it.

Going home I met one of my neighbours who wanted to introduce himself. We ended up sharing parts of our cultures, him being a Maori and well.. I said some "interesting" Swedish words. So now I've been called beautiful in Maori, not bad being my first week here. I learned that they have the pronunciation of Å, Ä, Ö like us in their language too. 

Of course my night had to end magically with a falling star and a wish. It's the first time I see a falling star. In the movies they fall so slow, this one was gone in a second or less. 

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Definitely not used to flying outside of Sweden. I could barely believe my eyes when they gave me a menu and I could pick whatever option I wanted - alcohol, warm food to a snack. They had metal cutlery. For some reason that impressed me more than the absurd fact that was sitting in something that was flying?


Funniest part of today must be when I asked for a bottle of water in one of the shops at the airport in Moscow and they had a few bottles of water from different parts of the world to chose from. The woman behind the counter looked at me when I said "I would like to have a bottle of water please" and she then gave me the one from Britain.


Left traffic in Singapore? Everybody is walking and standing on the left side and it's sort of a weird feeling when you're used to the strictly 'stand on the right side to not get in trouble' way of thinking in Stockholm. It took me more than 20 minutes to walk through half of the airport. This place is crazy, the distance between everything is stressing me out but the toiletts and the vibe here is amazing.


I haven't slept anything on any of the airplanes so far. The chairs are uncomfortable and there are Russians talking loudly in every corner despite time of the day. No disrespect to them. But even the staff was upset. I get it though, time and place gets really confusing flying so far.


There were a couple next to me, newly married from Russia. They didn't understand English and the staff started handing out gifts for special occasions (asking if they were newly wdded) the woman told him no. She had no clue what he was really trying to say. Luckily I had seen her scroll through some of her wedding pictures and helped them out. So they got a goodie bag with presents and a beautiful chocolate cake in the end.


On the plane between Singapore and Auckland I sat next to another couple from New Zealand. They were really cute, the woman had done Thai Chi and ballet and she somehow managed to jump over her husband and me instead of making us stand up so that she could walk by. She has a grandson. I'm just saying. Bawse. After that 9 hour flight I got their number and their offer to help me out if anything happens. It was definitley a great start for my time here in New Zealand.


33 hours of no sleep, red eyes and a confused but happy face later, I arrived at my home in NZ before midnight and I finally got some sleep.

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I didn't know Sweden had mushrooms like this one? Alice in Wonderland vibe. My last day will be spent with Ornella, Betina and Rita. One last cosy girls night before leaving.

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Well hello there and welcome to a blog filled with the brilliant thoughts of Cecilia. I've been asked questions surrounding my trip to New Zealand for weeks now and I have no good answers. See my mind can't take me further than all of the flight controls and them looking at me with suspicion, questioning me and my existens.

This is my first trip outside of Sweden completely alone and I feel genuinely cool about living in another country by myself. I survived my first fear - vaccination and evil needles. What I have not yet concurred is my second fear about this trip - airports. Rutin checks. Psssst, more like every time and that's just my experience in Sweden. I will crap my pants if I have to do that in Moscow or Singapore.

Anyhow, talking present tense I'm on my way to Stockholm again!! Working my way trough 6 and a half hour, just irritating the person next to me. Sorry lady with the red hair and coca cola candy.

* I always take off my shoes
* Actually sorry for my long nails on the computer
* I have food for 3.. and yes I eat it all
* The music blasting from my headphones nonstop
* Don't look at me like that I can't sit still. My butt gets numb fast. So I have to switch it up all the time.
* Sure my stuff is everywhere but on my side. I saw you looking at my bag, it is empty. I live on the train for 6 and half hour, I don't just sit on it awkwardly.

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