Monday, May 14, 2012

Yatta! and Feelings of Excitement and Nervousness

As of yesterday I have a ticket to Japan and all the money I need for tuition thanks to the gracious donations from my family.  I love them ever so much.  Now that everything is underway I keep thinking of things I'm going to need or things to look up.  For instance, I looked up the average temperature while I'll be in Japan (The high is 80), and I'm also thinking about getting a plug converter.

Other than things I'll need I also have feelings of excitement and nervousness.  I've never been so far out of the country before.  Sure, I've been to Grand Cayman where I had to go through customs/immigration, but that's not that far away.  Japan is half a world away with a 11/12 hour time difference.  Not only that but I'll have to ride on a huge international plane for nine hours.  I've never been in a plane, in a confined space that long before and it makes me a little nervous.

What also makes me nervous is the Narita Airport.  I'm afraid that when I get there I won't understand what people, specifically airport personnel, are saying to me.  What if I need to know something important but I don't understand.  What if I get lots in the airport trying to find my way out of the terminal.  What if I spend so much time in customs that I miss Mr. Mineyama, my program coordinator.  Maybe I worry too much and I'm fearful for no reason, but I can't help but worry.  This is going to be a long trip and I have a lot of things to think about and a lot of stuff to do to be physically and mentally prepared.  I've been waiting for this moment for as long as I can remember and it's going to be one heck of a ride.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Disappointment and Hope

"Dear Gilman Scholarship Applicant:

Thank you for your application to the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program.  The screening process for the Summer 2012 scholarship cycle has now concluded.  During the Summer 2012 application cycle, the Gilman Scholarship Program reviewed more than 2,600 applications for over 500 awards.  This was a very competitive application cycle.

All applications have been reviewed.  Unfortunately, you were not selected to receive a Gilman Scholarship.  We applaud your decision to study abroad and wish you the best with your international experience.   For other possible study abroad scholarship opportunities..."

 Despite this setback, things are coming along okay.  I've still got one scholarship to hear back from, I'm slowly getting more money for tuition thanks to various family members and my grandpa is letting me use his frequent flyer miles.  Still, it was quite upsetting to read the rejection e-mail from the Gilman Scholarship people and it still  kindda is.  But, I'll get over it eventually, and if I can't make it to Japan this summer there's always next summer.  However, I must not think in the negative.  I have to believe that I can make it this summer.  It's the moment that I've been waiting for for as long as I can remember.  I will go to Japan.