In August 18th,2013, I came to the United States to study. It was the first time that I was traveling by myself and more importantly this time there was nobody waiting for me at the airport for welcoming me to the new adventure I was about to start.
It was not the first time I was in the area my school is located. Some months ago I came to visit the school, so I already knew the neighbor (or that’s was I believed). My first shelter was a hotel. When I booked it online, I though it would be a good idea to stay somewhere close to the school, so I could go school to sign any paperwork before starting class. However, the hotel was a place not suitable for lonely foreigner woman. The hotel looked like those motels that you see in American movies where there is always a murder or something illegal going on. It was summer and the days were really hot. After walking around the area, I used to go to the hotel and locked the door until the next day. I used to put all my heavy bags next to the door so that nobody can trespass my little fort. As it was summer in the nights the people, who apparently lived there, liked to go outside and talked for hours smoking marihuana. Some others preferred to stay in their rooms and have a little fun with the partner of the night. I think that if my parents would have known where I ended in my first week of being away from home, they would have made me go back to my country immediately.
After two weeks of waiting for the confirmation of the apt, which it was going to be my shelter for the next year, I finally moved in. The apartment was in third floor. It had a big kitchen (or I least I though that the first time I saw it). My room was little but clean and with any marihuana smell around it (or at least that’s what I though). Life was starting to smile at me in the new adventure. The was good, my roommates seemed to be really good people. I couldn’t been more excited to start school and living by my own in a new country. But life was not going to let me enjoy the journey. It had a lot of surprises hidden in order for me to understand and learn important lessons in life.
I am still here, and I am still learning how to go through all of this journey.

Sincerely,

Raissa

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