While many youths are leaving the country, German couple moves to Bosnia: ‘Everything's artificial there’


While Bosnian citizens are increasingly leaving the country for Germany due to better work opportunities and a better life, there is one example of a family that decided to come and live in Bosnia and Herzegovina. They have been in Prnjavor for just over a month, but they say they have enough reasons to stay there forever. Pročitaj više

Their boy Marlon lived in Bonn, Germany for three months and despite not being asked for his opinion, he too moved to the city of Livno in Bosnia and Herzegovina. From there, he quickly moved to another location. He is now growing up in the village of Sarinci, near Prnjavor. Judging by the looks of it, that is where he will take his first steps.

His parents, Alina and Daniel, decided to pack their bags and move to BiH. The reason? Beautiful nature.

“It was as if I felt that this was for me, as I was coming to the village, my heart was beating somehow strangely, because in Germany everything, including nature, is too artificial, I want my son to grow up in real nature, and when I looked at agencies, where the most beautiful nature is, I found this,” Daniel Wafzig said.

He then bought a house and 40 dunums of land. Apart from the house, he is building a barn for their 10 horses, on the property, which currently looks like a real construction site.

Alina and Daniel came to Bosnia with their horses, and Daniel says, that unlike where they lived before, Bosnia is freedom for them.

Horse care is Daniel’s primary occupation. That is the business that he plans to move from Bonn to Prnjavor.

“I want to be a role model and an inspiration to young people who are leaving this country, to show them that there is something good here and that they can live good here, that not everything is so bad, and perhaps looking up to us, they could return to their home. This is a rich country, it's not that poor, but work needs to be done. Of course, what I noticed is that the ratio of earnings and prices is not exactly ideal,” Daniel said.

Apart from the price shock, they also experienced a culture shock.

“The people delighted me when we moved here, the neighbours offered us a place to stay, food, water, a bath, a place to warm up, the neighbour with whom I drink coffee every day, somehow we get along because she doesn't know my language, I don't know hers, but she brought me clothespins and dried meat, I immediately took out my wallet to pay, it wasn't clear to me that someone would just bring you something, as a welcome gift, we don't have that in Germany. Someone from the village always brings me meat and potatoes because they produce that, I rarely go to the grocery store,” Alina explained.

Friends, family, and colleagues are what they miss most and only from Germany. But they found new ones in Sarinci. Such as the neighbour Nevenka Jankovic. Only after she returned to her village after 40 years of living and working in Switzerland did she immediately speak German again. She serves as their interpreter, although they have already started learning the Bosnian language.

“It was a bit strange at the beginning and it was strange for the village, everyone was afraid. But it’s a normal fear in the village because you never know who is doing what. However, these are just two young people who want to work to earn something and they plan to stay here. They say ‘This is our house now, we don't want to go anywhere’,” Nevenka said.

They plan to build their future in BiH. Their son Marlon, will decide for himself. Moving to Bosnia is a bold move for many. For the people in Sarinci, their move is strange and endearing. They say the Germans surprised them. But over time they accepted them.

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