This summer I am studying abroad in Sorrento, Italy. I have never been more excited about anything in my entire life. For now, I am ignoring this trip’s financial burden because it will all be worth it.
My excitement started as soon as my parents said I was allowed to go. I admit I was a bit shocked at first that they had no hesitation in their decision. But after all, since I’m graduating early, I have fewer opportunities to do stuff like this.
After my parents said I could go, I filled out the application and sent it in. Then I had my interview with the professor coordinating the trip and was officially accepted to the study abroad program. After that, the shopping began.
I went a bit crazier with online shopping than I probably should have, but hindsight is 20/20. It started with a few shirts, then some pants, then jewelry, swimsuits, coverups, dresses and shoes. My eyes were definitely bigger than my wallet.
After I settled down with the shopping, I started to get excited for the food. My “For You” page on TikTok was covered in different Italian dishes. Pasta, sandwiches, pastries — everything looked so good. I can’t wait to wake up every morning and have real coffee in an authentic coffee shop with fresh pastries and a breakfast sandwich. The food in Italy is also so much healthier because nothing is processed with chemicals and crap like it is in America. I’ve heard that people can eat “worse” or eat more in Italy and still lose weight and feel better because of how natural the food is.
Once I stopped drooling over the food and my TikTok recommendations refreshed, I got excited about the beach. I cannot wait to swim every day and replace my perpetual pale complexion with a good tan. I’m also excited for the beauty standards held so highly in America to disappear. I can’t wait to feel comfortable in whatever I wear and never worry about the people around me judging me.
I’m also excited to go to Paris. No, I’m not just talking about a layover in an airport. My mom surprised me with an extension to my trip. My parents are going to fly down to Italy for my birthday at the end of my study abroad program and then we are spending a few days in Paris before flying home together. I was shocked when my mom suggested this plan to me, but I was also eager to take her up on it. I need to try the hot chocolate from that one café that went viral on TikTok.
And last but not least, I am excited to learn not only from the classes I’m taking but from the people and culture I’ll be immersed in. European countries are so different from America, in a good way. Since I’ll be there for five weeks, I feel like I will have a chance to assimilate, at least a little bit, into a way of life there and create my own routine. I think having this much independence in a new environment will help me learn a lot about myself and my future.