Thursday, July 21, 2011

Get ready Cordòba, cause here I come!

I got my flight itinerary yesterday! I think I scared my parents, because I screamed, and then ran out to the living room to dance for a bit before I told them what had made me so happy.

So now it is official; I leave at 4:10 pm, August 15th and land in Cordoba, Argentina at 10:45 am, August 16th. It's kind of a weird feeling knowing that this time next month I'll be settling into life in Argentina, it seems like just a few days ago I was waiting to hear if I'd even get into the program. Everything has been falling into place nicely; I've got a debit card to get money down there, we've ordered a new suitcase for me that should get here soon, I'm going to get a new laptop (mine doesn't work very well), and I've got my passport.

I've got kind of a weird situation with my visa though; apparently I'll go into Argentina on a tourist visa, and take all my important documents with me, and then when I get there someone will take me someplace and I'll get a student visa. I don't mind as long as I can stay in the country!

I also got an email back from my first host family (with rotary you normally have more than one host family). My host mother and father are Diego and Gabriela, they have four children, Constanza, 22, Diego, 20, Pia, 17, and Consuela, 11. My only siblings are 27 and 26, so I'm really excited to have a sister my age and to have a younger sister! My host mom also said that my school, Instituto Maria de Nazareth, will be close enough to walk or bike to, and I think that's pretty cool.

I can wait to be writing this blog from Argentina!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

A Beginning

Hey, welcome to the blog for my year-long exchange in Argentina. I'll be trying to update this regularly with all the awesome stuff that's happening!

So! A little bit of back story:

Sometime in the beginning of fall of last year, I had just gotten done volunteering at my library and I was browsing in the non fiction section, waiting for my mom to pick me up. Squished in-between giant books on how to ace the SATs, the ACTs, how to get a scholarship, how to get into college, and how to survive college, was a little book called "The New Global Student" (I recommend this book to everyone by the way, it covers other options besides studying overseas) I picked it up, but just for giggles, because I knew that I'd never be able to study abroad in high school. I was a 15 year old homeschooler for heaven's sake! I'd never been away from my parents for longer than a couple of days.

But the more I read, the more I became convinced that this was something that I wanted to do. So I started putting together power point presentations, essays, flyers; doing everything I could think of to prepare for the long, bloody, war of convincing my parents to let me go to a foreign country by myself. I decided that the war should begin with a stealth attack, I mentioned to my mom one day how interesting the book I was reading was. I had to be careful, work the idea that I might study abroad in slowly, carefully-

"Oh you know, if you wanted to do something like that, I'd let you!" she said cheerfully as soon as I started talking about it.

Right after that I started emailing people, and pretty soon I was filling out an application, getting interviewed, and then going crazy with waiting to hear if I had gotten accepted or not, and then after being accepted, waiting to find out where I was going.

Even with going through all of that, I don't think that it started to sink in that I'm going to be away from home for a year until I went to Outbound camp. That was one of the best things I've ever done! I got a lot of really good info on things there. And it was so nice to meet people who were doing the same thing as me to compare stories.

So that's what I've been doing in this last year to prepare for this awesome opportunity that I have. Now I just sent off an email to my first host family, and I'm impatiently waiting for their reply!