Marte Eggleston is an official CAPA blogger for spring 2016, sharing her story in weekly posts on CAPA World. A journalism major at the Indiana University, she is studying abroad in Florence this semester.
In this week's post, Marte talks about how her feelings around her Florence experience have changed and developed so far as the first half of the semester comes to an end.
It's crazy to me to realize that we have come to the halfway point in this adventure. Time passes in the strangest ways while you are abroad; you feel like you've been somewhere for a long time while feeling like you're constantly running out of time.
Florence has become familiar. The Duomo still makes me stop and stare, but it is almost commonplace now. We have started new routines and have made new friends, but we still miss the old. It's a complete contradiction. We have started to leave Italy and see new places, but coming back to Florence feels like coming back home.
On the other hand the rose colored glasses have started to fade as we see Florence through the eyes of those who actually live there. The tour guided groups are less cute and a little more in the way of what we need to do. I realized that I want to keep Florence all to myself and, like a real Florentine, not have to deal with the crowds or lines. Florence is still a very magical place to me and I want to hold onto that for as long as I can.
I've started to realize what this study abroad experience means to me. It pulls you entirely out of your life and transplants you onto foreign soil and says "go on and live." And the best part is that we do live and thrive (for the most part).
I wouldn't have the confidence to go to Portugal and Spain in this upcoming week without having lived in Florence first. I've realized that Florence will always be remembered as the first place I learned how much I can really do on my own. I'll always be in debt to Florence for that very important lesson.
As the first half of the semester comes to a close, I can hardly wait to see what the next half has in store.
Marte's journey continues every Thursday so stay tuned.