Greetings From London!

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Hey everyone! Welcome to my first journal post in London! Today, January 22nd marks over two weeks since I arrived in London. I wanted to give myself a little bit more than a week to write my first post to give myself time to process and reflect on all the primary emotions I’ve felt since my arrival.

Truth be told, my first week in London was extremely difficult for me. As soon as I stepped into my dorm building, I became emotional and homesick. I was so fixated on traveling logistics, such as making sure that I would make my flight, keeping track of my personal belongings, and packing all the essentials, that I was ill-prepared for how I would deal with obstacles in the form of emotional quandaries.

Aside from being homesick, I felt pretty confident upon my arrival because my home institution had hosted an orientation for us and familiarized us with the basics of the UK’s culture. I do believe that I have a lot of work to do in familiarizing myself with the lingo here. As soon as I entered Heathrow Airport, I was instructed to take a lyft to the area for pickup, and I thought the employee was referring to ordering a vehicle but was actually talking about taking the elevator upstairs!

I have never been well versed in taking public transportation, as I oftentimes get either intimidated or nervous to take it by myself, so I found myself encountering unexpected situations in terms of getting myself to certain areas around London to sightsee or even grocery shop. However, these first two weeks have really taught me that there is nothing that cannot be accomplished with practice!

I am still homesick at times, but I am definitely in a state where I have fallen deeply in love with London and am truly excited to explore every part of it! In the beginning, what helped me deal with all the changes that come with studying abroad were branching out to meet friends from all over the world through societies and classes, sightseeing, and going to the events that my home institution in America has been hosting for us here in London. This journal includes photos of two of my favorite sightseeing excursions thus far! The Victoria and Albert Museum and Buckingham Palace!