Hey guys! Hope you’re well.
I was in shock writing this, realising a month ago I was actually properly moving, moved into my apartment, Yorkshire Lass to Padovan Bella !
So here’s a quick update of what I’ve generally been up to!
Week One: Me settling in, buying things like food and essentials like blankets and stuff. Adulting! Fun…
Week Two was welcome week, getting used to the environment, and the university itself. This involved a lot of talks, and a couple of tours also. Padova being one of the oldest universities in Europe was opened in 1222!! (Nearly 800 years ago), so hearing the welcome talks, including the dean of the university and the deputy mayor talk with such pride was lovely.
One study abroad tip I had to give myself was don’t be afraid of trying new things and getting to know new people. Sometimes I can be someone who likes to stick in their comfort zone. Which, already, being abroad is a massive step outside the zone, however, a lot of times there are opportunities which can be great, if you will try. For me that meant firstly trying new flavours of gelato ! Which was a fantastic time. (Seriously , I’m considering just doing a post on how amazing the gelato is here! )
Now this doesn’t mean you have to try something crazy that you’re completely uncomfortable with. For example I’m not a fan of heights, so being told skydiving, I would rather not, but I like food, so going with others to try a food tasting might be something more my street (plus, who doesn’t love food?).
Also, at the other side of the coin, I realised it’s okay to take time to relax. It hit me that every day and every evening I had been doing some form of activities, be it a walking tour in the day, and a student gathering in the evenings, but eventually I had to give myself a time out, and just spend one of the evenings with my Netflix and call it a night! Which was so well needed.
Padova, I’ve began to learn and discover is a place full of rich history. From the architecture of the buildings, such as the clock tower in Piazza de Signori to even the history of the squares, such as Prata della Valle (see below) With beautiful church buildings, and fantastic botanical gardens.
Often, there’s beauty around every street corner. I’ve learnt to appreciate the (legal) graffiti, with artists painting at a street side, which honestly just brightens up the way. I’ll insert a few lovely ones I’ve found.
Week three, we began university, on Tuesday, and one of the differences I found with England is that here you make your own time table, based off the courses you want to enrol on, and attendance isn’t mandatory, meaning you could take a whole course as a non-attending student. However, due to the variety of degrees within psychology and courses you can choose, often there’s a lot of clashing (which is apparently normal anyway). But for me that was a huge stress (as someone who likes to have a bit of structure and order, at least when it comes to university). But I learnt that really, you can only do what you can and work around it, and things will eventually settle. Which, it did!
I know I say it often, but ask for help. Or at least talk to others. In our head our problems get amplified, but at least structuring it out and talking to someone, may help you rationalise and figure out what you can do. Plus just getting it off your chest helps too.
I also visited Venice for the first time, and honestly fell in love! I may have to do a post on just Venice alone, as it is absolutely gorgeous. It’s somewhere I would 100% recommend visiting!
Finally, as I sit here Friday of week 4, all I can say is that amidst the busy of life, things are often moving all the time. Constantly, take a minute to sit, and to breathe! Just a couple of seconds to relax. Because, days go so quickly! I’ve only just realised that wow, I have just done one month here! Already! And life can often pass us by so quickly and before we know it, it’s already been the entire year done!
So, whether you’re abroad, or even planning to: take time to breathe once in a while, and also! Don’t be afraid to try something new. A little out of your comfort zone, especially whilst you have the chance. Go out and discover your city, the hidden beauty and treasure!
~ peace, joy & love
(TK hits Venice!)