Iceland, Vikings and Medieval Norse Studies...a different world with Hannah Hethmon

Hannah juggled a long distance relationship, reverse culture shock and studying in Iceland.

About Hannah

Hannah Hethmon is an independent museum and public history professional. Currently based in Warsaw, she is the producer and host of Museums in Strange Places, a podcast that explores the world through museums. She has a master's degree in Viking and Medieval Norse Studies. 

In 2013, Hannah moved to Iceland for two years to do her Master's degree in Viking and Medieval Norse Studies. During that time, she did an exchange semester in Copenhagen, Denmark. In 2015, she moved back to the greater Washington, D.C. area for a few months before moving to Nashville, Tennessee for work. In 2017, Hannah returned to Iceland for a Fulbright Fellowship to learn Icelandic and study Icelandic museums. In May 2018, she moved to Warsaw, Poland to live with her Finnish husband for the first time after a 4 year long-distance relationship that started in Iceland in 2014. 

Everytime I move, I go through a lot of crying!
— Hannah Hethmon

When coming home...

  • Emotions and differences Hannah faced - This was a challenge to start new groups of friends. Hannah cried a lot when she got home. She was also in a long distance relationship.

  • What had changed for Hannah - She was in a job with many people older than her so she didn’t really relate to them. Building the community and making friends with like minded friends.

  • Biggest stress for Hannah - Long distance relationship, feeling lonely yet excited to be in a new place.

  • How Hannah supported herself - Met people through groups, she wished there was a ‘Tinder’ for friends and then she found this on Bumble BFF. Hannah called and spoke to her mum a lot. Hannah started hobbies such as cooking, yoga and getting into a routine. She found the joy in a normal daily routine

  • How her mindset had changed - She was exposed to a lot of ways of thinking, looked at the religion she followed and started to explore her beliefs a little more. Started volunteering and trying to find connections

  • 3 Lessons learned from travel and reverse culture shock

  1. Its important to have people around you that you can count on.

  2. Go to museums as these places hold stories and people who are very passionate to share with you.

  3. Wait before you apply stereotypes to others and be willing to see people honestly.

  • Advise to herself for returning home - Meet people as fast as you can, find anyone to do things with and then enjoy the place your at. There is always something to learn. Find the things you have never seen where you are.

I want to keep moving but it takes me about 2 years to form a solid community.
— Hannah Hethmon

Abby Lewtas

Hi I'm Abby, Adventurer, Life coach, Speaker and Blogger.

After a successful sporting career I now love sharing what I have learned from my adventures and traveling the world.

I believe in turning into your adventurous life through your intuition and the little nudges from the universe.

Lets share the adventure. xo