First, exciting news!!! My first post was published today on the official American Institute for Foreign Study blog! I’ll link that here so you can go check it out if you’d like. It’s not one that I’ve posted here directly, though some of the themes are the same.
Now, on to today. It started off great. I drank an entire bottle of water before coffee and leaving for class, and I felt significantly more awake and good during class. I’m going to try and make that a habit. After my first class, I found my way to a funky cafe across the city and treated myself to a vanilla coffee and croissant while I wrote in a journal. I wrote about three things:
- The struggle of maintaining health and balancing healthy being social, active, and making the most of this with resting and taking care of myself. More on this in a minute.
- My issues with money right now, and how I’m finally experiencing what it’s like to sacrifice in order to save up for trips. I eat what’s free, say no to most questions of spending money, and limit what I do let myself spend. Sometimes it’s a little stressful or hard, but I think it’s ultimately really good for me to learn this when travel opportunities seem so much more relevant. It’s how I want to live my life from here on out, so I don’t mind getting into the habit of it and embracing the reality of my financial situation.
- People watching. I mostly focused on my waitress. She smiled while I ordered, which is always a welcome thing for someone trying to speak in another language and also realizing that I can’t communicate as well as I would like to yet. I need a better vantage point for people watching next time.
Then I talked with friends, finally decided to buy a yoga mat, and did not rest at all today. Around six we were going to meet up with students from the university to exchange numbers to practice speaking Spanish/English together. Now, for those of you who may not know, I sometimes get really freaked out about social situations. I don’t know why, because almost every time I actually have to talk to people I enjoy it and I’m not bad at it, but the lead up to it and the idea of it sometimes makes me want to run away or hide in a box. That’s how I felt before these intercambios. The thought of having to mingle and exchange numbers with random people sounded like my nightmare, but it was actually awesome. I met a lot of really nice people and got a ton of numbers, and I’m really excited to get to know more locals.
That socializing went way better than expected. However, I think that was my limit without rest or breaks or anything because later AIFS had a pizza party mixer to mingle with all of our students and get to know the ones who got here about two weeks ago. To explain how that went, I had two pieces of pizzas and left without saying goodbye, then got ice cream and walked home on streets without tons of people. Something in me was screaming that I was not in the mood to keep socializing and just needed some happy alone time, so that’s what I did. It wasn’t a negative experience, I just learned to listen to my limit and I felt much better for it. Now I’m home listening to music and will probably do some yoga and/or watch some videos before bed. It’s been a good day. Goodnight all!