Here I am, sitting on a bed (which finally feels like my bed) with a comforting cup of hot tea (since I have been woken up by creeping cold this morning) in a lovely large room in the middle of Uppsala. (Well, obviously, it depends on how you define ‘middle of a city’. For me, a girl coming from more-than-a- million-inhabitant city, ‘middle of a city’ is anywhere within a walking distance from whatever the centre is, which, to be honest, is pretty much everywhere here).
But how did I get here? That is a kind of interesting story. I spend my whole life believing that the only way for me was becoming a lawyer, a shark that would win each and every case. However, my final year of secondary school has come and I have realized that I wanted to keep my options open and devote some time to my passion – travelling.
The first step was obvious. I have moved away from home. I have traded the comfort and certainty of all things known for stimulating and challenging multicultural university environment abroad. During those two years spent in Edinburgh I have become independent. But have I matured? In my mind, one matures through experience and what better way to gain experience than by spending some time living in different countries? I am really excited to invite you to accompany me on my way through Europe harbouring first in Uppsala, Sweden and then Paris, France.
In addition to all my travelling plans (some of which will probably not go through due to lack of time and/or finance), I am taking courses at the university which, as you know, is part of the Erasmus deal. I had been recommended a course package by my department to improve my language skills. Now it is probably the right time to mention that my degree is French and Scandinavian Studies and European Union Studies. Anyway, back to the course selection. Though spontaneity in life is vital, when it comes to important decisions, I prefer to make informed ones. I have spent days going through all the courses available and considering all the options and outcomes just to come to the conclusion that the recommended language course package was simply the best option. A comment on my courses will follow sometime in not so distant future.
Currently, the main challenge of the exchange seems to be time management. So much to see. So much to do. Not so much time. Truth be told, despite being the fourth largest city in Sweden, Uppsala is quite a small town (hope no-one reading this is offended, but it really is not a city according to my standards) and it does not offer as many options as Edinburgh does. But Stockholm is just a stone’s throw from here!