I arrived in Belfast last night, exhausted and disoriented after
a nearly 24-hour journey. I'm not usually a last-minute sort of
person, but my packing and preparations for this semester abroad
were done rather hastily in the last two days before I left. I've
been very excited about this trip for a long time, but all summer
I’ve been clinging to my friends and my normal social routines,
sort of in denial that everything was going to change very soon.
Now that I'm here, it has hit me. Things will not be the same for
the next three months. Old friends and old routines must be put
aside for a while.
It's a fantastic challenge – I'm alone in a foreign country,
with no familiar faces around, and I have to find a way to survive
in a new and environment and reinvent myself from scratch. I expect
every day to be a journey into the unknown.
As we flew over Ireland on the way into the airport, it was a clear
day, which is apparently quite rare here. I got to see the beautiful
green landscape from the sky, and it was certainly a heavenly sight:
rolling hills, misty rivers, and farming pastures, all in the brightest
colors. When I arrived at the airport, I was relieved to find that
two students were there to
pick me up and take me to campus. As we
drove and started chatting, they tried to guess which part of America