So it is currently day 3 of my travels. I gave myself a few days off from blogging to settle in and re-cooperate from jet lag and the massive overwhelming dream that is the city of London.
Surprisingly my travels went well. The plane ride wasn’t terrible, the food was alright, I made it safely so hey I’m not complaining. I was slightly on edge because I was without communication until I reached London, but again, it worked out. The only misery I encountered was customs…. yeah I know. So I applied for a Student Visa which is supposed to give clearance into the UK, right? Not with this lady. She was not impressed with my lack of knowledge on how to go through the UK border and with my Visa I assumed I wouldn’t need any documentation. WRONG. You know what they say when you assume… But she “did me a favor” and let me through because of my Visa… (again I was just as confused as you are) but next time I should have my documentation of my acceptance into IES. So tip for y’all. BRING ALL OF YOUR DOCUMENTATION.
Getting here was a breeze due to some wonderful Wofford friends who have their lives together more than I do. We originally thought of taking the taxi, but due to cost and traffic braved the Tube. It was a hassle with our luggage but if I can do it with luggage I can do it any time. I actually quite enjoy the Tube. It is faster, efficient and surprisingly cheaper than most transportation.
If you get anything from this blog, take that IES is a wonderful study abroad program. I am in awe of how truly inviting and prepared they are. My dorm has everything from a gym with Pilates classes, a common room full of games, and is in the heart of the financial district of “The City” of London. We are truly in the heart of London and as a small town girl… it’s a little overwhelming. But I am a Dittmar and my mother’s daughter. This small girl is going to tackle this city. But regardless, IES has set up this wonderful residence hall and really embraced us and our insecurities. I could not be happier with my choice in programs.
If you know me you know just how ridiculous I can truly be. I am constantly making a fool of myself and you can only imagine how bad it is now that I’m not in familiar territory. I’ve already tried faking a british accent to avoid looking anymore like a tourist, which is probably making this a thousand times worse. I’ve been loud in public (which is an American stereotype), DRAGGED my luggage up stairs and all over London to get to my dorm, gotten lost, asked for directions, failed scanning my ticket on the tube, incapable of communicating with locals, and just overall disorientation. It is the definition of a struggle bus. But on day 2 I successfully was able to relocate the local Tesco (grocery store) and today all by myself (and a map) got to a bookstore to buy a textbook for class. Progress right?
So this is quite a long post, but I will hopefully try to write more on my fantastic Health Practice program and the culture I’ve been thrusted into instead of boring details. But for now while America is getting out of bed London is usually getting in it… 5 hours ahead.