And So, It All Begins

I once read a quote somewhere that said, “If you weren’t ready, you wouldn’t have the opportunity.” I was getting ready to take off to a new country and leave the only home I have ever known and study abroad.

When I first decided to do this, I thought I was going crazy. The opportunity seemed like something out of a dream. I had no idea who was going, so of course that scared me. For some reason though, the fear was not enough to hold me back, and so I went for it. I spent the last six months preparing to leave my hometown, my family, and my dog. And now, here I am in Florence, Italy for the next three months.

Me saying bye to Jinx

Preparing to leave for the trip took a good amount of time. UMass Dartmouth’s study abroad advisor was a huge help during the whole process. She was there to answer any questions and concerns I had. The program I chose to go through was API. The advisors in the program were also very helpful and understanding when it came to delays in certain paperwork, such as waiting for a passport to come in the mail or a visa appointment at a later date than expected.

One of my main fears was finding friends since I was going alone. Thankfully, API made it easy to connect with other students from all around the United States that were also going. I ended up finding a great group of students to room with and even more friends when I arrived. My second fear was the airline loosing my luggage; this fear unfortunately came true. Luckily, my program helped me put in a lost baggage claim and I ended up getting the luggage delivered to me less than 48 hours later.

Going through each airport was easier than I originally expected. I had a connecting flight; Boston to Frankfurt, Frankfurt to Florence. My parents dropped me off right at my gate, so it was simple to check in my bags and go through security. I ended up meeting one of my roommates, Tim, at the airport and we boarded both planes together. Boarding the plane was not hard and I had prior experience doing so. The first flight was 8 hours and once we landed in Germany there was a worker holding a sign that said FLORENCE right as I stepped off the plane. They checked my boarding pass and brought me directly to the next gate. At that gate Tim and I met up with two of our other roommates. We all took the same plane to Florence. Once I finally landed in Italy, my program provided me transportation directly to the place I was staying.

Now that I was here, I was most looking forward to eating and walking around my new city. The food did not disappoint; amazing pasta, meats, and cheese! When walking around and sightseeing the buildings were so beautiful and unreal. My apartment has a great view of the Duomo.

The Duomo!
pizza yum
My friends & I in cooking class!

Check out my instagram for more

One response to “And So, It All Begins”

  1. Mabel, what an exciting adventure. We will live vicariously thru you! Keep sharing your experiences and have a blast! Stay safe and God bless!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: