Shit just got real, maybe even too real. I purchased my round trip ticket for London today. I’ll be departing from Minneapolis, MN on January 4, 2013. I’ll admit it. I’m really starting to get scared. The thought of being in another country is exciting, but the fact that I won’t know anyone when I first arrive is hard to deal with. Everything is going to be new to me. I grew up in a small town in Wisconsin. My graduating class had a total of 40 students. Now I’m moving to a city with a population of over 8,000,000 people. Talk about a paradigm shift! It’s going to be a whole new world. Five months is a long time for me to be away from everything I know. On top of that, I won’t get to see my family or my boyfriend accept via Skype. The butterflies in my stomach are fluttering around so fast right now that it makes me want to upchuck. Also, the thought of not being able to hug my boyfriend for five months makes me want to cry. In reality five months isn’t that much time, but right now it seems like a lifetime. After I get over the culture shock though, the time will probably fly by faster than I want it to. After all, this is a once in a lifetime opportunity that I had to take. I’ve lived most of my life believing that you need to make the most out of everything, take every chance you get, and never let your fears get in the way. If I back down now, it would go against everything I stand for. I’m scared, but I’m also shaking with excitement. The adrenaline erupting through my veins is inexorable. I’m finishing up with my fall semester in a couple weeks here and then it’s Christmas in the states. I’ll be on a plane to London in no time at all. Frankly, I’m less worried about my finals and more worried about having a heart attack. Some very disappointing information I found out today is that the schedule for spring finals isn’t going to come out until February, so I ended up purchasing my ticket to depart from London on the 25th of May. I might not be able to see my little brother graduate from high school. I’ll be able to find out more at a later date though. There is still a possibility of changing my departure to an earlier date in the event that I don’t have any finals from the 23rd to the 25th. *Crossing fingers.* Another downside to this equation is the fact that I just blew over $2,000 on a plane ticket, but I'm hoping it will all be worth it. After all, “Travel is the only thing you buy that makes you richer.” I'm just going to keep a positive attitude and remember why I decided to study abroad in the first place. This is going to be an amazing experience for me, and I can't wait to find out what it's like on the other side of the world. I'll keep you posted.