Violet Sanchez in Berlin
I am a Girl Gone International because...
after I left Australia to spend one year abroad in Germany, I discovered a place in which I felt more at home and more myself than I ever had in my nation of birth.
How did you get involved with Girl Gone International?
I found out about GGI because when I first came to the city. I was struggling to make friends, so I googled 'how to make friends in a new city' !!
But I am so glad that I did, because Girl Gone International popped up as a result, and I had a feeling from the start that it was the right place for me!
How has GGI affected or impacted your life or the lives of others?
GGI transformed me from being a new girl in a city, to being a girl at home in a wonderful new city.
What piece of advice would you give a girl wanting to go international?
Just do it! It's a massive leap, and it can be super scary to step outside of your comfort zone and to leave your family and friends, but if it's what you really want then it will all be worth it!
Knowing what you know now, about this lifestyle, about the world and yourself, what would you go back and tell your younger self?
I would tell myself to trust my instincts and follow my happiness, because in the end the things that make you happy are the most important and rewarding things in your life.
What does 'home' mean to you?
For me home is a place that makes you feel comfortable, safe and happy. I think I have a few 'homes' now, and I feel really lucky to have that.
What advice would you give to a newbie in the city who doesn't know anyone?
Put yourself out there! Ask that nice girl that you met for her Facebook details or her phone number, and then contact her and ask her to hang out! Friendship dating is like any dating, it can be nerve racking, but if you have a connection with someone it's worth it, so go for it!
When I first moved to Berlin I really struggled to find my feet here. I was not working yet, and while I was going to language school, I was not really making any friends I could hang out with outside of the classroom.
Then I discovered GGI, and everything changed!
I met three amazing ladies through GGI when I first came to Berlin - and three years later they are still such a central part of my life!! We laugh together, go out for meals together, swap war stories about our dating lives, share the highs and the lows, cry together, and then go out and dance our booties off! They are everything to me, and I am so grateful to GGI for bringing them into my life.
Have you found love overseas?
Yes! One of the first German girls I became friends with at GGI invited myself and a few other girls to come with her to a student party in Berlin. While we were standing on a balcony, my friends and I were the only ones there speaking English in a party full of German speakers, and a handsome guy overheard us and came over. He was German with British parents, and missed speaking English with native speakers his own age.
2 years later and we are inseparable - he is my love, my rock, and my family here. I can't imagine my life without him, and I would never have met him if I wasn't friends with the lovely girl that I met at a GGI event who invited me to go to that party!