“I’m leaving on a jet plane…”
June 1, 2012
By: Chloe Nash
So sang John Denver. I, like he, am faced with the prospect of leaving on a jet plane and I also hate to go. But fortunately for me, that’s where the comparison ends. My name isn’t John and I’m not an American singer/songwriter with an awful 60’s hairstyle and glasses. My name is Chloe; I’m a British undergrad languages student who has just finished the second year of her degree.
Those of you who have friends who are linguists will know that a languages degree often includes a year abroad – and that is what I am faced with next year. A year that I have looked forward to for so long has finally arrived. A year of opportunity to learn a new culture, to improve my language, to make new friends. A year which I have dreamt of for most of my teenage years.
But now it’s here, it seems so much scarier than I could ever have imagined. Don’t get me wrong – I’m still really excited.My anxieties haven’t quite managed to overshadow my delight at the prospect of living in Spain for a year… but they’re getting close. At the moment, my biggest worry is that I still don’t know my destination. I have applied to do a Teaching Assistantship with the British Council somewhere in the Canary Islands, Andalucía or Extremadura (in order of preference), and in line with their stereotypes, the Spaniards have been the slowest at responding to our applications. Two of my housemates are also linguists, one going to France and the other to Belgium, both with a secure confirmation that they have placements. I, on the other hand, am still waiting.
The tension is killing me. I received an email at the end of April saying that by the end of May/beginning of June, I would receive my placement. That means that in the next week I should find out where I’m headed. Every time I check my email, the knot in my stomach tightens. Every time my emails load, my heartbeat speeds up. And once again I see an empty inbox, letting me know that next year is still an unknown.
In all honesty, I’d absolutely love to get my first choice, and I think I have quite a good chance of getting it. However, the last thing I want to do (although it may well be too late!) is get my hopes up. Nevertheless, if all goes according to plan, by this time next week I will know and I can get to work on planning my year abroad.
Over the next year and important chapter in my life, I will be sharing my experiences on heruni.com. Thanks for reading and please join me as I “dream about the days to come” (the John Denver references will stop on my next post – promise!) and eventually live them on my year abroad.