My exchange started terribly. On arriving at campus, I was alone, hopelessly lost and realized that my taxi had driven off with my laptop. On top of this, I had recently been rejected from my accommodation preference and was certain I was not going to like where I was placed. I was pessimistic, wondering why the hell this supposed “greatest time of my life” had started so awfully and awaiting more unfortunate events to come.
I was left to venture the campus welcoming events on my own and I was terrified. The only comfort was that everyone on exchange was in the exact same boat. We all wanted to meet people. We were all clueless. With this at the forefront of my mind I was able to work up the courage to introduce myself. From there I met many wonderful people from all over the world. These barbecue meet-and-greets and student president welcomes became the center of a growing friendship group. It was this group and my room mates which became the center of my exchange experience.
I had an apartment with three girls, one from Austria, one from Germany and the other from Japan. Although we were in an apartment sitting above the busy, loud student mall of the university, it was these wonderful girls that made the apartment such an amazing, comfortable place. We hosted dinner parties and introduced each other to meals from our country of origin. I formed really close friendships, and eventually my exchange friendship group grew into more of an exchange family. I had the best of times with my exchange family. A main highlight was our road trips to the Rocky Mountains. This involved hiking mountains with terrible hangovers and the Europeans laughing at the Aussies who could not contain their excitement for freshly fallen snow.
…To read more about Georgia’s exchange experience, check out her blog!