Student Blogs & Vlogs | College Study Abroad Programs, IFSA-Butler

And visions of visas danced through her head…

Wednesday, June 04, 2008, 10:30 pm

So, here I am, like a giant sitting in the valley of some huge mountain range, my clothes piled around me. They’re sorted according to a system that made sense to me as I was packing up my apartment at school, but now that I’ve pulled everything out of the boxes, it all seems pretty random.

Packing for two trips at once is fairly daunting…especially because in the Dominican Republic I have to be able to carry all of my luggage through a rural area. So I need to fit clothes and personal items for 6 months (and two climates) into one big duffel and one backpack. Agghhh!

The good thing about the impossibility of my packing predicament is that it’s keeping me from worrying about other things, like my Spanish, or losing my passport, or failing all my classes in Peru. I guess there’s plenty of time for all that once I get off the runway at Logan in…hmmm 32.5 hours.

Today I went into Boston to get my student visa for Peru. It could have been pretty stressful, except I accidentally did a practice run yesterday, when I made it to the consulate and got called up to the window only to discover that I had brought the wrong letter. The packet from IFSA that contained the letter from PUCP that the consulate wanted also contained a letter from IFSA that said basically the same thing. The PUCP one was in English, and the IFSA one in Spanish. So, silly me, I just assumed that I would want the one in Spanish…after all, the whole visa application was in Spanish, and the letter was from the Spanish-speaking University. But no, I didn’t want the letter in Spanish, I wanted the one in English. Bizarre, yes, but also a problem that could have been easily avoided had I just looked at the big colorful letterhead on either letter. Anyway, today I knew where to go and what to expect, and the process was really easy and low-stress. Also, I got to hear a lot of Peruvian Spanish accents in the little waiting room—it seems pretty easy to understand. I suspect I’ll be pretty grateful for it after spending time in the DR where I’ve heard the accent is extreme. Although maybe after two months I’ll be so used to Spanish with no S’s that I’ll have trouble readjusting…who knows?

I really don’t have time right now to mull over accents. I need to finish doing laundry, figure out what clothes to bring, make a list of other stuff to pack, create an info packet for my dad (itinerary, medical info, contacts, etc.), organize all the stuff I’m not bringing, back up my entire hard drive, write thank you’s from my grad party yesterday, and…maybe…get some sleep. We’ll see about that last one.


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