Spending three weeks abroad in a foreign country seems frightening yet exciting, attainable yet expensive and shocking yet invigorating. Weighing all those pros and cons is important for preparation purposes, but reaching out to resources available will make the experience more delightful overall.
Resources that helped me for my trip to Greece include the Civic Leaders Center in the O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs with information and also the OVPDEMA Overseas Studies & Scholarship Program helped me a lot with financial support. These resources have allowed me to go to Greece with an open mind and less worries.
Being here in Greece, there are so many sights to see like the Acropolis, Temples, Agoras and also many famous landmasses. With every destination there is such a rich history behind the construction and also those who utilized the buildings. As far as infrastructure goes here in Greece a lot of the stairs and inclines are slippery because they are mostly made out of marble. In addition, in the residential areas the sidewalks have a lot of miniature obstacles and also this patch in the center that is extremely slippery as well. You really have to be safe walking around this city.
As far as meals go here in Greece the food portions are very generous and plentiful. Here I have tasted such rich and fulfilling flavors in many different areas throughout northern and southern Greece. It has been a very cultural expanding experience and probably one of my favorite attributes Greece has to offer.
Adapting to this living area has been quite easy for the most part, although there are a lot of cultural norms that differ from the States. The most alarming is in regard to the ancient Greece plumbing system and how they are prohibited to flush anything down the toilet, like toilet paper or any other things that could have been thrown away. I have not had any accidents, but it is still something I have to consciously think about every time I use the restroom.
Being here has been an invigorating learning experience for me educationally and culturally. For instance, I have obtained knowledge about origins of democracy and fundamentals of art within such a rich location like Greece. It has also been rewarding visually seeing the sites and also museums that go into more depth.
I appreciate all the help that I have received to experience this once in a lifetime trip here in Athens. Indiana University and more specifically the Office of the Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Multicultural affairs has offered life changing opportunities for students like me and I will never forget this.