Yesterday was a lil weird so I didn’t quite feel like writing, but I’ll fill it all in now! Class was supposed to be from 9:30- 11:30 but the schedule was typoed and it actually went until 2. I don’t know how that’s a possible typo, but it was surprising. Kindof an unwelcomed surprise because while I don’t mind class, my tummy was mad at me for eating some kind of combination of meat and cheese/cream/milk the night before, and was taking revenge. I was planning on just going back to sleep after class to try and shake it off, and was looking forward to that.
I did start to feel better though, which was good. After class, I did some work, read a little, and took a 20 min nap. Then we went down to the beach, which again had a lot of waves. It wasn’t as bad as the day before though, so I got to swim a bit. Afterwards, there was this whole mix up, of trying to find the Panigiri (the same kind of festival from the first day) just to see it briefly and head back to our conversation class scheduled for 8pm- it was a lot further than expected, the student here from France that we thought had headed there had actually gone back, and as we were driving back to the school (around 9:30- we called ahead and Michalis decided to reschedule the class) we saw them driving towards the Panigiri. Big confusion, because people were planning to go back in the evening, but we would have had no cars since the woman driving didn’t want to go and it’s her own personal rented car. In the end, Michalis just turned around and came back to pick people up, but it was logistically all over the place.
Emotionally, yesterday was just one of those days, probably surfacing because of not feeling too physically well. I’m finding one of the biggest problems with speaking Greek all the time is that it’s so hard to be myself in another language. And when I’m basically alone, feeling like I don’t even have myself just kinda freaks me out. One of my goals has been to be better at making/understanding jokes and just talking more colloquially in general here, and I’ve definitely been improving- but it still just feels so limited in the ways that I can have my normal personality. For example, if someone says something that’s the equivalent of what’s up/how are you (“τι κάνεις,” “πώς είσαι”) I can really only say “καλά,” which means “good.” I have no way of being like “chillin like a villain” or “da usual” (both of which I don’t actually say in real life) (generally) so I just feel boring, and like a record player.
At night I was torn between wanting to rest and feel better (was really tired and still not feeling 100%) and wanting to make the most of every opportunity by going to the Panigiri. It’s a hard balance, because I feel obligated to do things when I can. I’m a shitty decision maker in the first place, and being on my own makes it even harder. I decided in the end to stay back, which was definitely a good decision. I wasn’t alone; my roommate and the other woman were here too.
I got to take the opportunity to talk to my parents on the phone after they landed back in NY from their trip to Russia/Stockholm, at which point I had a slight emotional catharsis. I was freaking out a lil at how it had only been one week since I arrived and it feels like forever- time is passing really, really slowly. Which is fine, it’s lovely here, but I often look ahead too much, and since I have so many more pieces of the trip left, it feels like I’ll never be back with my family and friends, and I feel even more isolated. Things are fine and the place is wonderful, but it’s easy to feel alone sometimes, especially since often things are a bit unstructured here. It’s hard to accept that not everything is going to feel perfect, and that there will be times when I’m unhappy. It makes me feel almost guilty, as though every second should be the time of my life after coming all this way- but that’s just unrealistic, and once I started to realize that I felt a bit better. As I explained to my parents, I really am fine and I am enjoying myself- but sometimes you just have to let the emotions out. Talking to them made me feel a lot better, and they were good about just listening and understanding that I wasn’t complaining, just that I needed someone to talk to.
Moral of the story (at least the moral I invented to calm myself down)- it’s okay to feel a little down when you’re abroad. It may be a beautiful place and a big adventure, but it’s still life, and you’re entitled to have feelings.
Oh, and two minor anecdotes. 1. Walked into the bathroom last night to find a GIANT spider chillin on the wall. Borderline 5 inch diameter. My wonderful roommate, with her motherly/grandmotherly instincts, gladly came to dispose of it for me but it DISAPPEARED which I was okay with, as long as I assumed it had gone back outside or something. But then ~20 minutes later she was in the bathroom, found it again, and got rid of it. Such a brave soul.
BUT THEN after I got back from talking to my parents, there was a giant bug right next to my bed, and Liz was asleep so I had to take action all by myself- I have no idea what it was but it was LARGE. I trapped it with a glass mug (well, all of it minus an antennae, sorry bug friend) and started dragging it along the floor towards the door. I wanted to use the index card trick where you pick it up but I don’t exactly carry index cards everywhere. I then thought to rip apart a tampon box (thanks mom and dad for making me a girl) and used it instead. Still dragged it across the floor (all 20 feet) and then I got to the door and realized I couldn’t just kick it out because it was a glass mug. Finally I got the courage/it was starting to calm down enough from suffocation to pick it up and bring it away from my room. This took 20 minutes. But all was well in the end.