Living in Lithuania has been great, and one of the most rewarding experiences I’ve ever had, that said though, and I know this may be hard for some of you to believe. There are certain things you are going to dislike about living in Lithuania if you do decide to live here.
First things first I’m not European so maybe I’m just not use to certain things. All places have problems for sure, it doesn’t matter where you live but these are the few that got on my nerves this past year, also this is a follow up post to my 8 things I loved about living in Lithuania, I’ve tried to be as open and honest yet also tried to keep it fun. :D
So here they are the things I dislike about living in Lithuania.
Any day of the week 9 pm or after stop passed an IKI or MAXIMA (grocery stores) 9 times out of 10 it will be full of homeless people buying alcohol. It makes me feel sad to see them doing this, that said though they normally tend to keep to themselves and I’ve never seen any of them other than in the grocery stores? Weird!
I love Lithuania, and I try my best to promote it but I’m going to have to say, generally speaking Lithuania is swarming with miserable people. I’ve spoken to tourists, foreigners living here and locals alike most agree. Lithuanians tend to be a little “grumpy” is it lack of sun? Or just the way things are? Do people just look that way (angry)? Seems like shoving your way past people is the norm? My gran always used to say “that the further north you go in Scotland, the quieter people are. They take longer to forge friendships, but when they do those ties run deep.” I think this is true for Lithuanians, It’s just the way things work here, and once you talk to people, you will find that they are easy going, super friendly and incredibly nice, but it does get me down from time to time.
Bureaucracy. (State Institutions)
In Lithuania, it seems that everything is inconvenient and difficult. Nothing is streamlined or designed with the customer’s convenience in mind, when you live here you need to have a high tolerance for astounding levels of unnecessary and redundant bureaucracy. Hopefully with time this will change. :)
Dark winter days
I love the snow we all know that but the cold part I can live without. :D Winter means 4pm its pitch dark and its freezing cold. Cold weather seems to make everything worse. My hands were constantly cold my feet wanted to fall off -25 isn’t fun trust me. :D
Paying for groceries in Lithuania is hands down is the most intense and stressful experiences you will ever have! The moment it’s your turn be prepared… Seriously, once the cashier begins scanning your groceries, you have only a limited amount of time before she calls out your total and gives you that evil glare. There usually isn’t any room at the end after your groceries are rung up, so if you don’t bag up your stuff or get it back into your basket you’re out of luck. The cashiers move faster than you can even blink. To make matters worse the people behind you will be either glaring at you or pushing you down the line to hurry up. :D
Tolerance and Cultural awareness
“Tim where are you from?” “South Africa” “Why aren’t you black?” This is how it is here. Being a “white guy” from South Africa just doesn’t make sense. Coming from South Africa seeing the effects racism has on people leaves me with zero tolerance for any form of racism. Sadly I’ve seen a fair few incidents of prejudice and discrimination toward others of different cultures, religions and ethnicity’s. Yes, it’s only a handful of incidents, but to me I have no time for it. :(
Class & Snobbery
The class system is alive and well in Lithuania, if you are rich you are better than everyone and if you are poor you are looked down on. This is the same in most countries but I see the divide more here.
People (močiutės mostly) just don’t understand how “lining up” is supposed to work. It is perfectly acceptable to push right in front of you in any line, at the doctors, on a plane, at the store, at the bank doesn’t matter! Why is it always močiutės? :D
My English got worse
No seriously, My Lithuanian got better but my English definitely got worse. I find myself having to speak, what I’m going to call “different English” somethings I say in English people just don’t understand, I find myself having to speak simpler and repeat myself a lot. That said it sure is a laugh trying to get my point across in Lithuanian so it’s a two sided coin I guess. :D
These are just some of the things that sometimes get under my skin. Obviously these things don’t bother me so much that I actually hate living in Lithuania, you learn to live with them. I just wanted to show you that there will be things that you may not like about Lithuania just as there are things about South Africa and London that I don’t like. The way I see it you either adjust and move on or they become a constant thorn in your side. We learn to adjust, but it is still fun to poke fun at our lives here in Lithuania. :D
Thanks for reading,