..in the one week that I've been in the US. Yes, it's been that long and no, I can't believe it either.. The first couple of days were spent in running around, getting all the bureaucratic stuff done.. Registration, trips to the International student office, to HR etc.. Then, the bone chilling cold set in and I was paralyzed.. The blizzard that swept the whole of mid west brought the temperatures down in this town to the 40s.. But the sun did come out today and I've had a nice day.. Since so much has happened and it would be tough for me to get into details and document it all, let me just list some of the new experiences I've had and some new things I've learnt.. Because at the end of evreything, it's what you have learnt that counts..
1. On the 1st day, it took me half an hour to get to my building. I've now discovered short cuts and it takes me five minutes.
2. I've learnt the routes of the uni shuttle but I don't really need them 'cos of 1.
3. I've become acquainted with people who are willing to take me grocery shopping when I need to, which is very important since I don't have a car and have to rely on people who do.
4. I've learnt how to credit money to my student ID card and don't have to carry cash around and be afraid of being mugged anymore.
5. I've learnt to buy food at stores and to operate vending machines.
6. I've learnt how to do my laundry.
So, basically, I have learnt how to survive, how to be independent and for the first time in my life, to exist without having someone take care of me all the time. It is a heady and scary feeling all at the same time. I know I will make mistakes and fall but I also know I shall pick myself up and dust myself off.. because I have to and because there will be no one to pick me up. I do wish I wasn't all alone and my beloved was here with me but I'll have to wait another three months before I know if he'll be joining me. In all, it's going to be one hell of an adventure and no matter what happens, I'll always have the satisfaction of being a pioneer.. The first in my family to do a PhD and the first to study abroad.. Well, here's to good beginnings and better continuations..
Image from here.