Woohoo! Midterms are over and we survived! Of course, I haven't gotten most of my scores back yet, so survived may or may not be the correct term. Half of my midterms fell between our Corsica trip and my fall break. My last two midterms took place after fall break. Essentially, midterms were plaguing my mind for three weeks. For me, the hardest part of these tests were not the material, but the uncertainty of what to expect. At home, you usually can find someone who had previously taken the class to give you some insight on, at least, the level difficulty of the test. IES classes are taught with a very large emphasis on class discussion and participation. For me, this comes easily, but honestly, I did not feel as though I was prepared to take an official exam after five or six class discussions. In hind sight, I don’t think I did especially badly on any test and I am thankful for that! Now that I know the style of each teacher’s tests, I am feeling more confident for final exams!
Before midterms, I felt as though I was on a four month European vacation and school was just a place to go a few days a week to meet new people! Our midterm exams acted as a much needed reality check. I would love to resume my European vacation now that our first round of exams have concluded, but unfortunately I do not think that will be the case. In three of my five classes, I have a ten to fifteen page paper due at the end of the semester. Those are three long papers that have been looming over my head since I received my syllabus during the first week of classes. I have been mulling over paper topics but for the most part I have continued to prioritize fun activities over these crucial assignments. After some amazing trips to Barcelona, Amalfi Coast, Corsica, Milan, Greece, and Rome, I figure it might be time to take a weekend off and make some serious progress on my studies.
Something nobody tells you about going abroad is how truly exhausted you’ll be. Living and studying in Europe for 4 months is the opportunity of a life time and it is only natural to want to make the best of it. This weekend I stayed in Nice because one of my best childhood friends visited me. I was thankful for the lack of packing and time spent in an airport, but it was not the post midterms weekend of relaxation that my body so desperately needed. Lucky for me, Tuesday, November 1st is a national holiday. I will use this time to sleep-in, relax, and prepare myself for the second half of the best four months of my life!
Things to look forward to: a weekend in Annecy, class field trip to Marseille, and SKIING in Chamonix…. Stay tuned!