Travel Log 2: “Looking Behind and Looking Ahead: Expecting and Accepting the Unexpected” by Nicholas Daniele. Medfield, Massachusetts

As the time to leave approaches, I can’t help but think of what will happen if I screw up. Let me explain. Studying abroad is one thing, but studying abroad successfully is another. While some may think that surviving the trip considers a successful abroad experience, I beg to differ. I think that in order for an individual to successfully study abroad, they have to separate themselves from his or her culture at home. I believe that when I enter the reincorporation stage is where I will determine whether I have succeeded in separating myself from my usual environment or culture. Before I get to the reincorporation stage I need to start with the separation stage, but before I get there I have to share my letter!

I wrote my separation letter for my immediate family, in particular my two parents. The main theme of the letter was apology. Now I know this might seem strange, but hear me out. I tend to be a rather reserved person. You know, quiet, never much to say at family dinners, not the biggest partier. As a result, I do not think I express myself as much as I should or could. Since I am going to be half way across the globe I wanted to make sure my family did not think I was ignoring them or avoiding them. The combination of my personality as well as the importance of separating might seem like I am ignoring them. The main focus of my letter will be to apologize it if seems like I am angry at them or have forgotten about them. I feel like this is a great outlet to use if I struggle to find a way to explain how I am feeling. Neat.

When asked the question: Are you ready to accept and expect the unexpected? I think most people, including myself, should answer yes to that. When an individual decides to go abroad, they should already to ready to accept the unexpected. If they weren’t, why would they choose to go abroad? You can’t go to a foreign nation and not be willing to accept the unknown. It just does not make sense in my opinion.

The picture I chose that represents my journey to date is this picture of a river leading out DSC_2282.JPGto the ocean in Trinidad and Tobago. My mom was born there and I have a whole side of the family that resides there. I chose this picture because Trinidad is the first foreign
country that I have been to. The river is leading out to the ocean, which represents myself leaving my first abroad experience and venturing into something more – a more complete abroad experience. I have been to Trinidad several times with my family, but I since I am going by myself, I think this is finally the time where I leave my first abroad experience and truly experience what it is like to not only study abroad, but live abroad. I am the river; the ocean is the world. One could say the river is my rite of passage to the ocean – funny how that works.



One thought on “Travel Log 2: “Looking Behind and Looking Ahead: Expecting and Accepting the Unexpected” by Nicholas Daniele. Medfield, Massachusetts

  1. When reading your post Nicholas I can’t help but think that even the worst screwed up situations lead us into becoming who we were really want to be. Now let me explain myself, you stated that you were concerned that you might fail in your study abroad experience if you don’t separate yourself from your culture at home but I honestly don’t believe that will happen to you. You’re traveling to a country were their culture is so up front and in your face that it’s not hard to fall into the culture and let it surround you. You will be seeing everything written in Spanish, hearing people speaking a different language, picking up different customs that are appropriate to use and learning not to use ones that are frown upon. I don’t think adapting to the new culture will be difficult but learning to put yourself out there and experience the changes will be the hard part. I think what will be difficult for you from what you’re explaining is that you are going to be homesick. And I might be wrong but I agree that separation is difficult but I also think it is necessary for every aspect of life. Change is envitiable but your actions to that change is what makes or breaks you. As I stated earlier sometimes the worst screwed up situations lead us into becoming who we really want to be, do you want to be someone that can’t adapt or do you want to be someone that takes everything in stride and hope everything works out in the end? I hope you are able to separate yourself and experience everything that beautiful country has to offer. Good luck, and safe travels!


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