Emma, outbound to Bolivia
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As of today I have been in Bolivia for 4 months and 2 days and this is honestly one of the few times I have had strong working wifi in my home. This is my excuse why I haven't been posting journals. Now if I can sum up the past four months and two days into a few words I would say hard, beautiful and eventful (not very creative I know) Buutt its true. The first month for me was the hardest because I knew hardly any spanish at all, I thought what I learnt in school was enough but I was terribly mistaken. This made it hard to communicate with kids in my class, luckily for me there is another exchange student from Canada named Hanna who is in the same class with me so she was pretty much my best friend at school.
Also because I am in the Southern Hemisphere it was cold at the beginning of my exchange and coming from The Bahamas where it is 90 degrees Fahrenheit all year round going straight to rainy windy 50 degrees was not fun. This also made me very home sick at the beginning of my exchange also with my birthday being within the first two weeks of my exchange and I invited all these other exchange students and basically spent my birthday with a bunch of strangers. However, the homesickness quickly dwindled as I started making more exchange student friends luckily there are about 26 in my city and 10 in my host club.
So far up until this point all of my friends have been exchange students because almost all of the girls in my class pretty much hated me at the beginning of the year because I was a dumb blonde. I didn't speak the language and ( not to sound like I'm bragging but ) I was the ideal beauty of Bolivia, I was blonde thin and tall with green eyes. You would think that that would gain me friends but all it gained was disrespecting guys and jealous girls. Luckily there was one girl in my class named Luciana who spoke broken English who took me under her wing and that's who I am closest with in my entire class she is a sweetheart.
Time went past and I got better at Spanish nothing too interesting happened, I got into a couple sticky situations with my family that were resolved in matter of no time and I have developed an amazing relationship with my host sisters they have done some things for me that I will be forever grateful for (such as letting me borrow their clothes) but also being some of the best advice givers and comforters there are. But probably the best time I have had in Bolivia so far was when I went on a trip of touring the cities in Bolivia with all the exchange students. The relationships that I gained and the emotions felt and the scenery I saw is indescribable there were several moments where I was caught about to cry just overtaken by how beautiful Bolivia is and how amazing the people surrounding me are.
There are things that every exchange student feels these emotions that are just what people live for they make you feel alive ( as cheesy as it sounds ) but you learn about yourself and what makes you tick and thrive for more and its just beautiful being given the chance to travel so my advice is NEVER miss out on a chance to go on trips go to every one put yourself in debt if you have to but go. Now, its a couple days before Christmas and as expected I am a little homesick but its not because I'm not happy here or I don't feel at home here, I have so much love in this family that I have decided to stay with them for all of my exchange, but its rather the fact that because I finished high school before my exchange so did all of my friends and when I went to Bolivia everyone else went to College but now I am seeing everyone being reunited and hanging out together which makes me a little sad to be without my friends also this will be my first Christmas ever away from my mom and there are some traditions that we always did together for Christmas that I do miss but none the less I love my life here in Bolivia and I wouldn't change it. If there is any future outbounds that would like to here my story a little more personal or has any questions you can email me where can give you a more casual/personal contact and we can communicate. Best of luck to all future travels!
Posted on Fri, December 23, 2016
by Terri Wescott