I have been home for 2 weeks and I am finally, completely, officially, UNPACKED! The past 2 weeks have been so jammed packed that I haven’t had time to write a post until now! It felt so good coming home; I missed so many people and so many things! All my friends surprised me at the airport and it was amazing to be reunited with everyone. But the excitement didn’t last long as I was thrown right back into school. At first it didn’t seem like much work to catch up but now that I have more assignments on top of the things I have to catch up on and exams being right around the corner, I’m starting to freak out! There is so much work to do in such a short amount of time and the stress is real! At least summer is just around the corner and that is something to look forward to! Now that the exchange is over I feel a sort of emptiness, I guess it’s because it was such a big deal and I had been looking forward to it for so long and know that it’s really over, I can’t help but wonder, what next?
Monday, 5 May 2014
I just lived in Switzerland for 3 months. Is this real life, did that really just happen? I imagined doing this exchange for probably a year and then it was hard to believe that it was finally happening and now it’s completely unbelievable that it’s over. I was thinking about it for so long that it never actually seemed like it was going to happen. I knew that I was going, but subconsciously I didn’t believe it. I can’t believe it really did happen and that I really did pack up and leave my home for 3 months. It was a truly amazing, once in a lifetime experience and I’m so thankful that I had the opportunity to do it. I know that I am very lucky, and privileged, to have had this, and many other opportunities, to travel and experience different cultures. It so weird that it’s all over, I am feeling so many different emotions it’s hard to keep track of them all. I’m excited and happy to see my family and friends and be in my own home and sleep in my own bed, but at the same time I’m sad that I have to say goodbye to my Swiss life and I’m even more sad about saying goodbye to Virginie and her family. Although this experience is over, it is just one chapter of my life that is ending and even though that’s sad, the things I’ve learned and the ways I’ve grown as a person because of this trip will help me in all the other chapters of my life.
Sunday, 27 April 2014
With only 9 days left in this amazing journey, I am over whelmed with so many different emotions. On one hand I’m sad that this experience is going to be over, but on the other, I’m excited to go home, sleep in my own bed and see my family. With my departure date being so close I just want to be home, I don’t want to pack, I don’t want to go to school, (which will be the most pointless thing ever) I don’t want to say goodbye and I don’t want to be on an airplane for 7 hours. Although I don’t want to do any of those things, I don’t really have a choice, but the most stressful thing for me is packing. Coming here I brought 2 suitcases, one of which weighed over the limit, and with the amount of things I bought I am extremely worried about it all fitting. Luckily, I was able to ship a few things home so that opens up some space and I did bring gifts for my host family, so again, that makes a little more room. Even though I was able to lighten the loud a little, I still don’t think it will fully compensate for all the things I bought! I will admit that I do have a little, okay maybe a big, shopping problem. The thing about shopping in a different country is that it’s kind of a 1 chance deal, it’s not like I can go home to think on it and then go back, it’s now or never kind of shopping and since I’m trying to live with no regrets… I mean I did feel guilty about how much I was buying and how much money I was spending, but not guilty enough to stop. Does this make me an addict, should I go to some sort of meeting? But in all seriousness, I am really worried about it all fitting; I even contemplated buying another carryon suitcase! I mean I’ve accepted that 1 suitcase will, again, weigh over the limit, and I’m fully prepared to pay for that with my own money but I’m most concerned about my suitcase actually zipping up. Although I did buy a lot of things, we can’t forget that some of these things that are filling my suitcases are presents for my beloved family, which I bought for them out of the goodness of my heart! So please, everyone pray that I can zip up my suitcases!
Sunday, 20 April 2014
I’ve been prolonging this post for as long as I can but it seems like all hope is gone. There are so many things in life that you can’t control and that ultimately suck. The thing is, I am supposed to be in Abu Dhabi right now, but unfortunately I am most definitely not there. The plan was to get back from Edinburgh on Friday April 11, then leave for Abu Dhabi on the Tuesday, but that all changed. It began on Thursday when my exchange partner, Virginie, and me were still in Edinburgh, she started feeling a little sick and was worried to fly home the next day, but we had to go home, so we got on the plane. Throughout the whole flight she was vomiting and could barely hold it together, but in spite of this we both got home in one piece. Once we were home in was quite evident that this wasn’t just your average flu, after a trip to the doctor we found out that Virginie had Mono. According to the doctor it was the worst case of Mono she had ever seen in her whole career. With this information the trip to Abu Dhabi was up in the air, but Virginie’s parents were hopeful that we would still be able to leave on Tuesday, but as the day approached it became evident that Virginie would not be able to fly. With this news her parents were still hopefully and planned that we would fly out on Friday instead. But again, as time went by the realization hit everyone that we would indeed not be going anywhere anytime soon. Missing the trip is understandable and with good reason, but that doesn’t stop the disappointment. In all honesty, I don’t think I have every seen someone as sick as Virginie was, I mean she could barely move and couldn’t sleep at all. It was a really hard situation; I felt so bad for Virginie, who looked like she was on her death bed, but at the same time I was super frustrated that I would be missing a once in a life time vacation, however these things happen and sometimes life sucks. Thankfully, a week after getting back from Edinburgh, Virginie is finally starting to recover and get back to herself, although she still can’t do much of anything and the doctors say she wont be fully recovered for a couple weeks. It really sucks that we weren’t able to go but I just have to keep reminding myself that going to Abu Dhabi wasn’t the reason I came on this exchange and I just have to make the best out of this unfortunate situation.
Sunday, 13 April 2014
Yesterday I got back from my amazing trip to Edinburgh, and because of the major lack of internet and contact with the outside world, I was unable to do any blog posts while I was there! I was a little worried about this trip as we were staying in a sketchy hostel that could potentially have bed bugs, I also wasn’t sure how it would play out with all the other students. I did know everyone who was going, but I was worried I would get left out because they all have their friends and I’m the odd one out. Although the hostel was a little sketchy, it wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be, but it was definitely a character building experience! Although I was also a little worried about being left out, the trip was actually a great way to get to know people better and build more relationships. Even though I knew almost everyone going on the trip, I hadn’t really gotten to know a lot of them because they aren’t really good friends of my exchange partner, but I was able to get to know those people better! I was able to get to know those people better because there were 14 girls in my room! Yes, that’s right 14! The room was a complete disaster the whole time, there were suitcases open and sprawled across the floor, people’s belongings scattered around the room and for pretty much the whole week the floor was virtually undetectable. Thankfully we didn’t spend much time in the room, as we had a very busy schedule! On the first day we spent the whole day on a bus driving through the Scottish highlands, which was beautiful but not as exciting as it sounds. It was basically 8 hours on a bus with 5 stops lastly from 15 minutes to an hour, but at least there were nice views! The rest of my short time in Scotland was spent roaming around Edinburgh. Whether it was going on a city tour, a ghost tour, shopping, hiking or going to get something to eat, we were walking, walking EVERYWHERE! The amount of walking I did on the trip is simply unfathomable! I mean I have never been so tired in my life! My legs hurt, my feet hurt, my WHOLE BODY was in pain! Every night by the time we would get back to the hostel I was basically sleepwalking and it would take me all of 2 seconds to get to sleep! Apart from being exhausting, the trip was really fun and overall another great experience!
Wednesday, 2 April 2014
As much as this trip as been fun and exciting, there have also been some boring and lonely times. Don’t get me wrong this has been a great experience so far, but, like anything in life, there are ups and downs. A lot of these boring and lonely times are at school! Class here for me is very different because I really don’t have to do anything except “listen” and the teachers don’t really expect much from me so I often catch myself daydreaming or making a masterpiece of doodles. I actually don’t really mind this, as it’s a nice break from school in Canada and the stress of getting good grades. Another upside to my school experience is that 4/5 days of the week I have a free period, I pretty much always go to the library and read, and I have been able to finish almost 4 books since being here, which is rare for me as I am usually to busy to take the time out of my day to just sit down with a book. There are often times outside of school when I’m hanging out with my exchange partner and her friends and I get lost in their fast talking French and I’m unable to contribute to the conversion and I again find myself deep in thought or even crushin some candy on my phone. In these times of boredom and dullness I find myself thinking about anything and everything! I have always known that I was a thinker/planner but I never knew how much I could daydream; things like summer activities, redecorating my room, fun crafts and my blog all keep my mind occupied.Whenever I talked about this trip and my adventure to anyone they would always say ‘your going to have so much fun’ or ‘that’s so exciting’, and the truth is they were right but no one ever told me there would be boring times. I went into this thinking that it was all going to be exciting but in reality there are down times and not every moment is sunshine and butterflies, but I am trying to make the most out of the unexciting moments. These uninteresting times have given me so much time to think and get to know myself better, so even though there not particularly the most exciting, I enjoy being able to let my mind wander.