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3 things that changed after my trip ...

"3 things that changed after my trip", article written by Mai Loan, an experienced traveler also known as Instagram @mailoisinoz, exclusively for Yogis on Roadtrip.

My name is Mai Loan and in 2014 I took a plane ticket to Brisbane in Australia. My plan was to stay 2 years to study. Finally, like any plan on a trip, I decided to change.

Instead of staying 2 years as a student, I stayed studying 1 year and a half and I stayed 1 year in PVT (Visa).

Here is the top 3 of things that this experience has changed in me:

I reconciled with France

Before leaving, I had the easy criticism of France: "The French are cons", "everything is slow in France", "we are late", "All policies are zero" etc. (And do not throw me especially on the subject of the French administration!)

And finally ... After 3 years abroad, I understood that everything was not to throw in our beautiful country, including access to health and school (and yes, if you want to be treated and educated in Australia, you better be rich). And then the gastronomy too! My God, I forgot that good bread, cheese and pastries were not everywhere!

I learned to be grateful.

And yes, not so bad France finally.


(me in front of a bakery in France on my return)

I am more open-minded

Okay, you'll tell me it's cliché, of course. But it's so true! I remember that before leaving, I had an Italian roommate. She told me that she was learning French but she still had a small level. I then remember saying to myself "I'm going to talk to her like I'm talking to everyone and if she does not understand, she'll ask me to repeat, that's all! "

Well, she was just avoiding me because she was embarrassed to speak French with me. I thought it was a pity and that was not the way she would learn.

Well when it was my turn to talk to my roommates in English and they spoke super fast, I can tell you that I quickly understood the discomfort. That feeling of inferiority that you feel when you ask someone to repeat 10 once ...

Today, I can tell you that instead of judging people who do not speak French well and who learn it, I admire them. (Especially since French is much more complicated than English).

Beyond the language, the meetings with the Australians but also the backpackers and foreign students (in particular Colombians, Brazilians, Chinese, Italians ...) allowed me to confront my ready-made ideas. I am thinking in particular of all these discussions that I had with Chinese people about the political regime put in place there. I understand that some media tell us what they want. After several hectic conversations, I also understood why I was angry when I called my Taiwanese friends "Chinese people". The conflict between these peoples was not necessarily what interested me the most when I was in my little room in Paris, centered on my problems of European. I also made friends from Dubai who explained to me in the greatest calm how their families had slaves who worked for them. In these cases, you can not just get upset and scream scandal. It's your friend, and you have to (at least try) understand their way of life.

These are only examples of others, but they reflect how different my topics of conversation were (I insist, I mean "different" and not "better") than what I can have in France .

I came back with new projects, and I became more ambitious!

Before leaving, I felt that the project of going so far for 2 years was the project of my life. Once you've done it, and you realize it was not that complicated, you find yourself thinking about doing bigger things again. It started from the moment I decided to stay 3 years instead of 2 years.

"Why do not I leave for a while in Argentina? "I'm going to start freelancing! "Why would not I start my own business? "

And yes, traveling has also allowed me to develop my entrepreneurial spirit! As it is difficult to find a permanent contract in your branch in PVT, I developed during my stay there my freelance activity in digital marketing. I also created my company (see here) which helps French travelers to start their adventure in Australia by accompanying them in all the administrative procedures to be done at the beginning. It allowed me to overcome lack of self-confidence, to meet many people and to surpass myself.

In addition to all that, I became less shy (obliged when you do not speak English well, there is a moment, you have no other choice than to start even if you make mistakes), I I cut the umbilical cord with my parents, and I learned that fear should not be a hindrance to my projects.

And for all that, I can not say it enough: Thank you Australia.

1 comment

  • I thank you for this article. I like your way of writing that makes you accessible and authentic :)

    Claire MICALLEF

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