Pre-Departure: T-minus 10 Days and Counting!
So, finally taking the time to sit down and post on my blog has forced me to acknowledge the reality that I will be leaving the United States for 5 months. I realize this is quite obvious considering I am studying abroad, but it really hasn’t sunk in until just now. I will be studying at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth, which I am beyond excited about, but I also have some reservations about it all.
For me, studying abroad will be a drastically different experience than leaving for college. I go to Butler University, which is located in Indianapolis, commonly known as the home of the Indy 500 and the setting of the 1986 sports film Hoosiers. Indianapolis is also my hometown. I live 30 minutes away from Butler (on a good day!) and I am fortunate enough to be able to have my car on campus, which means frequent trips home throughout the semester. When I am tired of the food in the dining hall or don’t feel like paying for laundry, for example, I would just make the short drive home. I have gotten in the habit of using that safety net at college and it will be a huge adjustment being nearly 4,000 miles away from home. I am less anxious about what I will encounter in Ireland as I am about what I am leaving behind.
Needless to say, I feel very unprepared to board that plane for Dublin (well, Newark and then Dublin), which could have something to do with the fact that I have no idea what to pack. Reading the material from IFSA-Butler and going through my study abroad checklist has helped with all the anticipation though.
Undoubtedly, I will miss my friends and family, but I will also miss the little things, such as the free Wi-Fi in public places or peanut butter. I had the opportunity to study in Mexico the summer before my freshman year of college through the Indiana University Honors Program in Foreign Languages. Before I left I was worried about leaving all of the people I cared about for two months, which is the longest I had ever been away from Indiana. Little did I know the thing I would miss most during the entire trip was air-conditioning. There were a lot of things that surprised me in Mexico (in a good way, of course) and I can’t wait to find out what I’ll be most surprised by in Ireland! I plan to make the best of whatever comes my way!
Until next time —