Ready for Adventure

Eudora Erickson
August 15, 2015

Hello everyone! My name is Eudora, and I am studying abroad in Quito and the Galapagos Islands this upcoming semester. I am a rising Senior at the University of Rochester studying Economics, Sustainability, and Art. I am originally from Oregon but am moving to NYC next summer, and I can’t wait to spend the first part of my senior year abroad! Below are the two views I am used to seeing...We'll see how this changes over the next semester....

It’s pretty crazy that I’m finally leaving for my trip tomorrow morning…I ended up applying for the Galapagos program early January of 2015, so it is surreal that I am actually about to experience this trip that I have spent the past 8 months talking about. I love nature, and I am passionate about creating a more sustainable world, so I am beyond excited for my classes, travel, and seeing some great sights.

So, what have I been doing to prepare for this trip?

  1. Telling everyone and anyone that I’m going to the Galapagos Islands
    *At the dentist* "Yes... A filling...Okay.  Did you know I'm going abroad next semester?"
    *Calling my phone company* "Great speaking with you too! By the way, do you have advice for me as I finish packing tonight?"
    *During an interview* "Yes I know it's a Spanish speaking country... No, I don't speak Spanish"
    *To my dog* "I'm going to replace you with a turtle this semester"

  2. Getting PADI SCUBA certified
    One of the highlights of this summer was getting SCUBA certified. After swimming throughout high school, it was amazing to finally learn how to breathe under water. Since I got certified in NY, I can't wait to see living things that are more exciting than sunken school buses. Hopefully I won't have to wear this many layers in the Galapagos....

  3. Shopping, shopping, shopping
    If you can imagine, I can't really take most of my clothes from Rochester (snows 75% of the year) to the Galapagos. I spent this past week making the most of my Amazon prime (6 boxes total), buying out Target, and of course - shopping for new shoes. Oh, and can't forget my Latin American Spanish Phrase Book!

  4. #vaccinations
    Yellow fever, typhoid, hepatitis, malaria...vaccinations galore. After dealing with vaccinations for the past three months (and reacting negatively to two of these), I am ready to actually TRAVEL. On the bright side, at least I can travel most anywhere now?

  5. Trying to learn Spanish
    Key word: Trying. I'm not entirely the best at learning languages in classrooms, so I stopped taking Spanish after high school and only took a semester in college. I know that learning in the actual country is way different, and I hope my basic knowledge will help me get from point A to B! I do watch movies in Spanish we'll see if that helps.

  6. Eating Asian food
    The fact that I will not be surrounded by ramen 24/7 is slightly depressing, but I love food and hope to experience some interesting cuisines. I have eaten Asian food every day these past few weeks, so I *think* I will survive for 4 months.  

  7. Skyping with my friends
    Can't believe that I won't see most of my school friends for 8 months (starting last May)...So, of course, I spent this week skyping friends from school and spending time with my friends from home. My friend is studying abroad in Spain next semester, so shopping (and stressing out) with her this week was fun.

  8. Constantly checking my passport
    The struggle to get my visa was REAL. Not only did I almost lose my visa paperwork, but I misplaced my passport at one point. The Consulate of Ecuador was great in NY, but nonetheless gathering all of my documents was a bit of a hassle. SO, this week, I made sure to not lose it again.

  9. Reminding myself that this trip will be amazing, and that growth only happens when you step out of your comfort zone
    I seek adventure and love to put myself in new situations, but I have never visited a country where I spoke so little of the language before. It's scary to think that I won't be able to communicate with my host family as well as I would like, but I know that this is the best way to learn and grow. 

So, tomorrow morning, I'm putting my big girl pants on and heading out for what will be an amazing 4 months of adventure! Eudora the Explorer...Off I go!

Eudora Erickson

<p><span style="color: rgb(85, 85, 85); font-family: 'Lucida Grande', 'Lucida Sans Unicode', 'Lucida Sans', Verdana, Tahoma, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: 18px;">Senior at the University of Rochester studying economics, sustainability, and art. Pursuing a career in the corporate world but not-so-secretly a nature obsessed forest kid from Oregon and New Mexico.</span></p>

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