I’m sleeping in the room of a Dentistry student tonight. Beside the bed which I happily bounced on a couple of seconds ago, I see some models of dentures and giant figurines of a tooth. I am also resisting the urge to touch her things – it is rude to snoop around people’s items, that I know – but a book catches my eye – “This Book Will Change Your Life”. Moral dilemma: To read or not to read.
This is why I love airbnb; you catch a glimpse of the local, of a fellow human. You quietly observe the things nonchalently placed around the room, the Deathcab posters, the ticket stubs, and you piece these fragments together and form your bubble of how this person must live. It is interesting, is it not, catching a glimpse of one’s way of life? Through these tiny pieces of puzzles left lying around for me to put in place in my mind as I like.
The place becomes not just a space to sleep in, but something closer, something more.
Tonight, Sam has been such a wonderful host. We walked to the supermarket, and she invited me to go upstairs to join for some drinks. Almost instinctively I hesitated, but some foot kicked the back of my head – ‘you’re on exchange’ – and before I knew it I had my first German wine, good conversations with local students and night had set in.
It does feel like exchange has begun; I am excited to wander off on my own, in my mind.