My name is Jordan Panza and I am studying abroad in Venice Italy for three and a half months. I am originally from the Boston area so I never had to be concerned with how much stuff I brought to school, so packing for three and a half months in 1 big suitcase and a carry on suitcase was a new experience for me. It was very difficult to decide what pair of shoes were practical yet cute. It was also difficult to pack for such a wide range of temperatures! In September, Venice can be 80 degrees but by the time I leave it could be as low as 25!
After arriving and settling in I have realized packing was the easy part! The difficult part is getting adjusted to a new country, new friends and being away from my family. I was so exhausted when I was on the plane that it did not hit me until I arrived that this was it, I was going to be away from my comfort zone for three and a half months. I missed my boat to get to my apartment so I had to wait an extra 30 minutes or so. Then when I was finally on the boat, it was crowded and everyone was speaking a different language. After the boat ride I had a ten minute walk up and down stairs to get to my apartment. As I said earlier I had two suitcases. When I saw the stairs on the first bridge I think I almost cried. I just thought of how easy every other move in day at BC was. My parents had been with me, I had a car to bring my stuff right outside my dorm and then elevators to get everything up. All I was thinking is why did I pick the challenge? As I was have a mini breakdown on the famous Rilato Bridge, a father of two young children came up to me, picked up my suitcase and carried it up the flight of stairs. I was so overwhelmed with the kindness of this one man that I was shocked when a different guy did this at next set of stairs. The kindness that these people showed me was incredible. The rest of the journey to my apartment was much easier!
Unpacking had its own set of struggles as there is only one small dresser and small closest to share between my roommate and myself! Currently, I am half living out of my suitcase and the other half of my stuff is unpacked. After my unpacking, I made a huge mistake. I called my mom. Mixing extreme exhaustion with homesickness led to a tear filled phone call of asking my mom “What was I thinking with going abroad?” After my mom reassured me, I took a nap to try to get my head straight.
After my tear session, I met my two other roommates. I have three roommates in total. My direct roommate is a girl from Japan. I also have a guy from Germany and another guy from North Carolina. Our first meeting included lots of questions that started with “In your country is…” It is so awesome learning about all these different cultures and countries.
I am still in orientation week and trying to learn where everything is in the city. I have quickly learned that I will still most likely get lost everyday but I am up for that adventure! I cannot wait for classes to start (Never thought I would say that!) so that I can started getting a rhythm down. I do have to mention that I am lucky, I do not have to get adjusted to the food at all. I have always been a big fan of Italian food so the food transition has been great!
I can already tell I am falling in love with this beautiful city!
Well that is all for now!