Monday, April 19, 2010

It is Truly Beginning:)

This blog will be my record of my experiences with AFS from now until I return to Seattle in July of '11. It has been arranged for me to leave the country in the beginning of September. This is when I will experience the grief of leaving most of my loved ones here in Seattle, Washington, which I foresee to be the hardest part. The only thing that's going to help me is the fact that I'm flying to Italy!!!!!! It excites me, yet scares me to bits. I will be living without the guidance of my birth parents, my friends, and the community I have built around myself. It really is a frightening thought to me, but when I think of what I will get out of this year, nothing can compare.
It has been a week sense I was officially accepted to live in Italy for 10 months! One of the happiest days of my life was the following Tuesday. Nothing could break my smile:D When I even think of myself living in such an extraordinary place, it breaks all the dark clouds around me so that I may enjoy the thought of the beautiful blue sky that will surround me in Italy. But I do have to say, I will probably start to miss the dark clouds of Seattle eventually...

Why Italy?
Who wouldn't give anything to live in such a place? It's beautiful, has friendly people and delicious food, but there's more then that. The history of the country is dark, surprising, romantic, violent, elegant, and lavishly magnificent. The art is what appeals to me the most. So many monumental artisans originated there in Italy, their paintings still awed by people today. What was it about Italy that inspired such work? There has to be something in the air, or about the people, the food, or the countryside that sparked these classics. This is why I so desire to go here, because of my love of art.

So, yesterday I went to my required orientation with AFS. There I had a lot of questions answered, about rules, tips, policies, and just how the overall experience will be for me and my fellow AFSers. I met several other students that were either going for the summer, to do one semester or a whole year like me. It was nice to talk with some of them about what they had gone through to get this opportunity and what they were doing in preparation. The whole six hours was worth it and I even got sunburned!
Some things I'm doing now to prepare are taking an online U.S. history class to make up for the one I would be taking here in my Seattle school next year. This class is a pain, a huge one at that. But its worth it! I must remember that. I will soon get Rosetta Stone Italian, which is a well known computer program that teaches language very well (another computer lesson I will need to find time for). I'm really excited to start this though, because I can't wait to learn a new language! I will soon need to get a new passport, because I need one that will be valid for 6 months after my planned return date. I will get my visa once I know the city I'm going to live in. Besides these things I am preparing myself emotionally for the difficulties I may experience, the new people I will meet, the chances I will make over this year personally, and the fear of leaving the comforts of my home and family and friends.

Arrivederci for now!