Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Phase Two

According to the ACM handbook, study abroad students generally go through three phases during the semester. During the first phase, they are overwhelmed and excited by the thrill of being in a new place. During the second phase, they get stressed out and critical. And during the third, they fall into a routine and start to feel at home.

Well, right now I'm in phase two. Every moment of every day takes a certain amount of energy, and I end up feeling exhausted with a headache all the time. I feel like Italian is going too quickly and I can't keep up, and I start panicking in class whenever Luigi starts calling on people. To be honest, right now I'd love to be home in the U.S., curled up in bed with my dog. I know this phase will pass soon and that when I'm done with this semester I'll look back on it as one of the greatest experiences of my life, but I can't deny that feeling stressed and overwhelmed is part of the study abroad experience. Hopefully I'll grow from it.

Yesterday turned out well though. I got home, said hi to my host mom, and she asked if I would like to watch TV with her. We watched "Who Wants To Be a Millionaire" in Italian, and it turned out I could understand more of it than I would have expected. Then we ate pasta and "Uovo d'inferno," deviled eggs, for dinner.

1 comment:

  1. Yesterday, I was walking down the street, and there was a dog wandering dazedly a little way off. She was covered in some sort of white stuff, and I couldn't figure out what it was. When she got closer, I realized that she had been burned, and all of her fur had sloughed off. The white stuff was some disgusting blistery scab that covered most of her body. And, on top of the burns, she had gotten into a fight with something, and it had bitten a chunk out of her back. You could see bone, and the flesh was rotting. No one even spared her a second glance, but I couldn't look away.
    Today, I saw her again. She was dead.

    That's the kind of thing we're dealing with in India. Just existing here is exhausting, emotionally and physicallly.