First, I would like to apologize for not writing in all of July. It was a very busy month for me, I was finishing up swim team and my two summer school classes at American River College. Luckily, now those are both over and I can focus on Spain.
On July 30th I had my visa appointment, the leading up and preparation part was very stressful. I did not receive my support documents in time and by the time AFS sent copies by email, we had already left for the San Francisco Spanish Consulate. Immediately after we got off the freeway we saw an Office Max, where we could print the email, but they did not have wifi so we searched that part of town (a bit sketch) for a wifi enabled coffee shop. Once I downloaded the documents, we went back to Office Max to print them out. We made it to the Consulate by 10, was in by 10:15, and out by 10:30 (even though my appointment time was at 10:30). The next day we mailed the original documents (that of course, arrived the same day I had the appointment). All in all, the preparation for the visa was 100 times worse than the actual appointment.
On Aug 11th my visa came in the mail!! I was so excited because the visa process was now officially over!
On Aug 20th my travel documents arrived from AFS! It included 3 luggage tags and a "what to do when you get off the plane" flyer. Receiving the luggage tags just made this experience seem even more real. It is insane to think that in 14 days I will gone!
My friends began school one week ago, and it was a weird feeling not doing all the "back to school" preparation they were doing. It is also odd to think that I'm not in school right now when everyone else is well under way with homework, essays, and projects (no, I'm not exaggerating). I know I'm really going to miss St. Francis HS, but I am SO EXCITED to go to my new school, IES Virgen de la Encina!!!!! I always joke with my friends that the hardest part of my exchange will be having to dress myself every day (since I have worn a uniform my whole life) and having to attend the same school as boys (since SFHS is all girls). I would like to reiterate the word "joke," though, because this obviously won't be the hardest thing...
Two days ago, I celebrated my 16th birthday and got my drivers license! Basically, this means that for the next two weeks I will be driving around town picking up last minute things for Spain. On my birthday I met with my friends after school got out and hung out, then I went to dinner. It was a low-key day, but I was so excited to see my friends! This Saturday I will have my Going Away/16th Birthday Party with all my friends and family!
I still have been emailing my host mother, Lupe, and after almost 3 months of waiting, I finally received their host family application! It includes everything I need to know about my new family such as: daily life, activities, and hobbies!! We have a ton in common and I am so looking forward to meeting them!!
Until next time...