When I was little, my parents used to ask me where I wanted to go to college and what I wanted to study. At the time, I only had one definitive answer for them: “I want to go abroad for a semester and explore the world”. I’m so lucky to say that I am living out my 13-year-old dream as I am sitting on the steps of the fountain in front of the Buckingham Palace reflecting on the first days of my semester studying abroad.
The weeks leading up to London were not easy. My semester started much later than all of my friends abroad and everyone back at BC. It was difficult watching everyone reunite after the summer and experience the excitement of moving into his or her homes off campus while I was stuck sitting on my couch at home anticipating my travels across seas. Briefly, I contemplated withdrawing my acceptance from my school in London because I was struggling with the idea of being way from BC and my best friends for so long.
Even though I have only been here for 9 days, I can already say with confidence that choosing to study abroad will be one of the greatest decisions I’ve made in my 21 years. My first days in London have been nonstop from the minute I landed. I’ve spent this first week attending orientation sessions, meeting new people, shopping for essentials, and exploring the city. I also took a trip to Munich this past weekend and met up with other BC friends who are studying all over Europe!
Before we left for the summer, our study abroad advisor suggested to us that studying abroad would be a roller coaster of emotions. Although I was able to make friends with the other American study abroad students living in my flat and other BC students studying in London, I was still feeling a tinge of homesickness. It was highly stressful the first day as I tried to maneuver the Tube (the transportation system in London), find a grocery store, and get used to all of the small differences in the culture that was so new to me.
It has definitely been an exciting but exhausting first few days of my abroad experience, and I cannot wait to see what’s in store for the rest of my time here. This week I have my first classes, which could potentially bring some stress back into my life, but I think that I’ll be going uphill on this rollercoaster for a while now. Now I need to get back to London, explore some more, and try some fish and chips…will update soon!