Am I Ready to Leave Yet? Nope.

Julie Miranto
August 21, 2016

My flight for Spain leaves in approximately eight days, twenty-three hours, and fifty-two minutes, and I'm not at all ready.

Okay, so maybe that's sort of an exaggeration. I am ready. I mean I have my visa, my phone plan, all my information from IES Abroad, I've gone shopping for all my necessary travel items (cough cough peanut butter cough cough) but at the same time I still feel so unprepared to spend a semseter in a foreign country.

I guess this isn't too surprising, I mean how prepared can you be for the unknown? All I can do is pack my bags, cross my fingers, and get excited for the most adventurous four months of my life.

And that's exactly what I hope this semester will be.

I've lived the majority of my life in a tiny bubble. I went to a small high school in an average, suburban town. After graduation I only managed to push myself to venture two hours from home to attend Gettysburg College. (If you know anything about Gettysburg you'll know that it is not a metropolis. It's a small tourist and college town with not many places to go and not a ton of new people to meet, but I absolutely love it).

My favorite part of going to Gettysburg College is it's amazing study abroad program. As soon as I got to school and heard about everyone's passion for studying abroad I knew that I had to push myself to go. I needed to branch out of my little bubble and experience the world, because if I didn't do it now I likely never would.

So I decided to take the leap and finish up my Spanish minor by spending a semester in Salamanca, Spain. Not only that, but I also have trips planned to Germany, Portugal, and maybe even Switzerland.

I picture my abroad self as this cool, international girl, walking the streets in her sunglasses, vlogging everything and totally thriving (maybe like that scene in The Cheetah Girls 2 when they run around Barcelona and sing and that beautiful Spanish man with the guitar randomly follows them). But let's be honest.....reality has me destined to be the very uncomfortable, confused, lost, American girl that sticks out like a sore thumb and has a terrible Spanish accent. 

Needless to say (as much as I try to deny it) I'm terrified. This is the farthest I've ever traveled and only the second country I've visited outside of the United States. I'm intensely directionally challanged, my ability to speak Spanish is not nearly where I want it to be, and I'm terrified of airplanes, and yet here I go to live in Spain. (Sounds promising, I know)

I'll be spending my semester abroad with three of my close friends: Kelli, Emily, and my Spanish roomie Cynthia (expect to hear a lot about them in my upcoming blogs). All I have to say is thank god for these three because if they weren't going I sure as hell wouldn't be going either. They're going to be my constant support system (aka the people who help me not get lost in the streets of Spain at 2 AM, cause honestly it might happen).

Europe will never be the same once we arrive.

I guess even though I'm crazy nervous about living in another country, I'm really just curious to see how my semester abroad will change me. Will I gain a new perspective on life? Will I learn how to be an adult? Will I find a Spanish husband? Will I become one of those annoy girls who begins every sentence with "Well when I was abroad...."? (Please no). Will eveyone at Gettysburg forget about me?! (Seriously worried about this one).

There's too many questions and not enough time (seriously though, I'm down to eight days, twenty-two hours, and 25 minutes now ). I guess the best thing to do at this point would probably be to start packing  (how does one fit four months of items into one bag? Stay tuned).

I can ignore my nerves by distracting myself with other things for now, right?

*cue internal screaming*

Much love from Spain, (not really though, I'm still sitting on my couch in Pennsylvania)


Julie Miranto

<p>I&rsquo;m a 20 year old student attending Gettysburg College where I study English with a focus on writing and Spanish. I come from a big, close-knit Italian family, am in love with reading and writing, and am always open to new experiences. I hope to be as creative as possible in everything I do and can&#39;t wait to find influence from my semester in Salamanca!</p>

2016 Fall
Home University:
Gettysburg College
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