Nerves. Of course it’s normal to feel all kind of different emotions as I begin my abroad preparation. The uncertainty over not knowing where I will live, who I will live with, and even the nagging feeling of being spotted as American. Which isn’t even a totally negative thing, though I definitely don’t want to get caught using the wrong slang words. That would certainly not be a very good move to help blend in with the public.
So there are nerves, plenty of them. The real thing is how to deal with the nerves and learn from them. My answer? Make a binder that will include all of the important information I might need to plan my time across the pond, both before I leave and when I arrive. Full of information about the University of Surrey (the internet has some great photos if you are interested), things to include in a blog, expert packing tips, and class details. Now I know what you are thinking, a whole binder just to go to the United Kingdom for nine months? Don’t worry, there are plenty of other things I have decided to do as well. Such as: a bullet journal to keep track of assignments and weekend trips, as well as, a to do list on my laptop telling me what I have left to do before my plane takes off on that hopefully turbulent free Saturday night.
Curves. Did you know that just because England is more posh than the United States that doesn’t mean they are automatically more put together? Well, it doesn’t. Which I happened to learn the hard way, because I have certainly had my fair share of stresses during this journey. The first being that I had to wait until almost the end of the timeline to find out about my acceptance (no stress there). I also had to jump through a couple email hoops to figure out how to set up my university email.
My “accommodations” are still up in the air, though after a week I finally had my incorrect birthdate changed to fill out the application. If we could somehow get some universal terms to talk about housing and the prices, that would be really great. Though my current struggle happens to be that I wasn’t given a CAS number in my acceptance like I was told would happen. So be sure to stay tuned on that stressor as my advisor receives a couple more frantic emails.
Now I just have to start my visa process, wish me luck with that though *insert nervous emoji here* as I have been told that is not the easiest process to go through. I feel like now is the right time to get a shoutout to my incredible abroad advisor, who has definitely received an unnatural amount of emails from me. Just hope Surrey is ready for all of my nervous and excited energy, too!!
Speaking of which, I have booked my flight, which seems to mean that this thing is really happening, more so than when I got my acceptance email. You will all be happy to know that I will be leaving the evening of Saturday, the 14th. Of course my 10 and a half hour flight also means that I will be getting into Gatwick the following Sunday. I couldn’t be more excited to start this countdown, even with all the nerves present.