Melinda – Home is where your heart is
This is a story about an independent, courageous woman, who left her home at the early age of sixteen. It’s a story about finding a new home, finding and building up a family, finding a purpose and replanting these roots in a new context, when life leads you to another continent again.
Melinda Nagy, Mum of little Mila and Co-Founder of Sakura Teatox and me sometimes meet for co-working in a café in our both new hometown Augsburg. One day, I was thinking about some new stories for the blog and just in that moment, like a bolt from the blue, I realized that the new story about courage was sitting right in front of me!
Melinda was born in Romania. She left her home when she was 16. During the day she went to a clothes-designer-school and at nighttime she was working to earn for her daily expences. Once she met a guy from Japan. They fell in love, they got married. Two years after Melinda finished her school, they left Romania to live in Japan together.
In Japan, Melinda felt the desire to bring a bit of Romanian culture into the Japaneses life, and as love goes through the stomack, she decided to open up her own restaurant even though she had no experience within the gastronomic branch. It was a challenge. „And I love challenges,“ Melinda says, with sparkle in her eyes. The restaurant was successful from the beginning and it became Melindas second home. Japanese TV and Newspapers reported about her restaurant and even Newspapers in Romania published her story. It was one of Melindas „Times of her life“.
She learned to speak the japanese language fluently, appreciated the japanese culture and found close friends. For example Debbie. Melinda and Debbie started a small Detox group at Melindas restaurant. The women met to create juices and smoothies and to share tipps for a healthy way of life. Out of this group, the idea for a detox tea began to grow and in 2017 they founded Sakura Teatox, which was launched in 2018.
Melinda and the Japanese guy got divorced years before. But some day a smart and polite man entered the guestroom. Soon he became a very loyal customer, who returned everyday. And so, bit by bit, he slowly entered Melindas heart. Melinda and Jim, the regular guests name, married and moved to Busan, South-Korea together in 2015. In Busan Melinda got pregnant and in September 2017 little Mila was born. As Jims expat contract ended in 2018, they had to decide whether they would move to Seattle, to live closer to Jims family or to start a new life in Europe. Today, I am happy they chose the last.
Melinda, when was the last time you were courageous?
When we moved to Germany. The decision process was quite exciting: Jim saw a job he really liked and I encouraged him to apply for it. Germany… At that point the idea was still far away. But a week later they called him for an interview. They had a really good conversation and the company remarked to get back to Jim within two weeks.
Then the weeks passed by and no one came back to him. So we began to make other plans. We were just about to sign a contract for Seattle, USA, when they called and invited Jim for an Interview to Germany. So he flew. And had another great and interesting conversation. The HR responsible promised to send the contract within the next days. Within the next weeks nothing happend. We were confused. In the meantime we had made a list where we opposed Seattle to Europe and wished for Mila to grow up in Europe. But how should we deal with the uncertainty?
Finally they called Jim and explained that for political reasons they couldn’t get back to him. They sent the contract. And now we are here. It was hard at the beginning, especially for Jim as we both didn’t speak any word in German. But we were also surprised from the open minded people here in Augsburg. We hadn’t expected that. I guess we made the right choice.
Today, what are you thinking about and what are your big thoughts of life,?
Concerning Sakura Teatox I need to figure out everything about e-commerce and to create a strategy for entering the German market.
My long term question is to find my purpose. Whats my job in this life? What am I here for?
Are you working on that purpose question?
No, I dont’ do anything to find it out at the moment. I am just into organizing Kita-life with Mila, organizing Sakura Teatox tasks and live my life. But I have that thought in my mind and carry it with me wherever I go. So I am prepared to take a chance whenever one comes along.
What is your definition of courage?
Step out from your comfort zone. See how things look out from another point of view. There are so many doors that you can only see when you step out. But its so scary, right?
Do you have a tip for someone who is at that point but afraid?
It is important to trust your instincts. When you have that connection than just do it.
Pictures: Melinda Nagy, Pexels (Aksonsat Uanthoeng)
Text: Sarah Lay