There’s no place like home. But, to find a roof in the foreign land that treats you like family, is finding a home away from home.

A few days ago;

I was returning back from my college and suddenly it got very cold and started to rain. I realized that I didn’t have an umbrella in my bag and wasn’t carrying any jacket either to escape the cold. On reaching my station, I decided to take a bus, instead of walking down to home. Waiting at the bus stop, shivering with cold, I noticed on the opposite side a familiar yellow car stop by and an old uncle walking towards the station, looking at the screen displaying the arrival/depart timings of the trains. On a closer look, I realized that the uncle was my host with whom I was staying. I approached him and on seeing me, he exclaimed “Maac, I was looking for you! I was waiting for the next arriving train from Monaco.” Immediately he opens an umbrella and covers me from the rain. He says, “I thought you might get wet and hence came to pick you up from the station.” On hearing this my heart swells with emotions and I thank him for being so considerate. The next thing brings tears to my eyes. He says, “It’s okay! We are family.”

At this moment I couldn’t help but think about my family, who would do the same for me. Maybe it’s a very normal thing for my host family and a common practice for all the guests coming and staying at their place, but to me, it was an act of pure kindness and love in a foreign land. Addressing to me as their family and showing care, is something that is priceless to me and a special memory that I will take back to India.

I still remember the time I was looking for Homestays for my 3-month duration in Nice, France. I was skeptical and was only hoping to find a good family for the stay. When I booked my homestay, my lovely host, Mireille, assured me that she will look after me and later was sweet enough to come and pick me up at the airport on my arrival. In my previous blog, I shared how I had little trouble finding adapters for charging my laptop and phone. With help from my uncle, I was able to find the right adapter, who solely went to three different shops and hunted down the right ones for me.

We have done gardening together in their kitchen garden, planting fruits and vegetables for the summer. I have enjoyed some authentic Italian dishes by my host (my uncle is an Italian and aunty, a French). We have also toured together around the Eze village and often indulge in quality conversations. My uncle cannot converse in English, but still, we have the best conversations. I teach him some Hindi phrases and in return learn some french ones!

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I am glad that I found a family, who just didn’t hand over the keys to me, but choose to be there when I need and offer a perfect homestay experience. Blessed!

“It was hard to be away from home, But I am glad I am home now.” ❤


P.S. Aren’t they a cute looking couple?! 😀