March 2008

Today thus far has been a pretty gloomy day.  It’s finally getting warmer, but the rain kind of destroys that.  I think I’ve gotten a bit done today, and I think the fact that my jeans are soaked up to my knees proves that.

I went to visit April at around 1:30 because I hadn’t heard from her or Dr. Gupta in over a week.  I wasn’t sure if my e-mail was giving problems or not, so I felt it better safe than sorry and went to Young Hall.  It was nice to get to talk to her and she informed me that she sent out my application about two weeks ago, so hopefully I’ll be hearing from Uppsala soon.  It’s weird, I still feel worried and I probably will continue to feel that way until I actually get to hold my acceptance letter.  It’s a little strange, because I honestly feel more nervous about this acceptance letter than I did for my college acceptance letter.  I don’t see a reason why I wouldn’t get accepted, but I suppose that’s always a possibility.  April said she had a ton of e-mails, understandably, so I also decided to hold off on visiting Dr. Gupta just yet.

Another thing checked off today, is the Intercultural Issues meeting.  We went over the same things that I’ve already read many times, but I still thought it was nice to listen to him speak.  When I was braving the on-again off-again rain on my way back, another girl from the meeting was on her phone complaining obnoxiously about how she felt it was boring and stupid to have to sit through that meeting about “culture shock” and stuff that she started to make some sort of list about something.  I figure, it’s a privilege to study abroad and many kids would want that chance, and there she is just complaining about stupid things.

At the meeting we got this amusing pink paper and on the back it actually lists things you might see in a travel guide for people coming to North America.  Here’s a list of some for those who are curious:

  1. Going to university costs perhaps 10 times as much for Americans as for the students of our country.
  2. Fraternities and sororities are a dangerous phenomenon that does not exist anywhere but in the US. Just stay away.
  3. Health care is provided by one’s employer in the US and it varies tremendously in quality and cost.
  4. Children just 16 years of age can legally drive a car in some parts of the US.
  5. Gasoline is considerably cheaper in the US ($3 for 4 litres) than in our home country.
  6. There are almost no passenger cars with Diesel engines in the US.
  7. Your chances of being murdered in the US, especially by being shot, are many times higher than in our country.
  8. Children and university students in North America are encouraged to have a part-time job while in high school or college. Who knows what that does to their grades?
  9. Avoid any trouble with the police in the US because it is one of the only industrialized countries where one can legally be sentenced to death.
  10. As hard as it is to believe, there are only two national political parties in the US, and they are both conservative. (This one made me chuckle)
  11. American money is not colorful, but it is still interesting because of the occult symbols [see the back of the $1 bill]
  12. US elections are too confusing to explain. They allow 50 sets of rules and schedules that are determined by each of the 50 states. The votes of the people who live in Washington, the capital city, don’t even get counted.
  13. Try to move to the US if at all possible because taxes are lower than in any other industrialized country.

And with that, I’m off!  I hope I get my letter soon, though I’m not sure if it’s going to be sent to my Purdue address, my home address, or the study abroad office.

For those who want to know a little bit about intercultural issues check out this website:


Okay, wordpress just ate a huge post of mine which is rather lame.  I don’t have the time or energy to write the whole thing out again but it basically consisted of this:

I did the online survey from the My StudyAbroad page and it repeated things I had heard 20 or so times now.  It also asked goofy and easy questions at the end, though one of the wrong answers to the question at the end said: “The Japanese like karioki.” and I was wondering if it was some kind of fish I had never heard of.  Well, it dawned on me that they were actually talking about “karaoke”.  I then began to wonder if the SA office proofreads the things they put up on the site.  I just feel that’s a pretty glaring mistake, even if it is technically a “foreign” word.

I tried to do some of the Visa stuff yesterday, and I couldn’t really understand some of the things it was asking me.  I mean, some stuff I know I have to wait for, like my actual acceptance letter to Uppsala.  But, there were other things, like things concerning my passport, that I just didn’t know how to answer.  I figure I’ll ask April sometime soon about it.  Some of the things mentioned that confused me.

  1.  Under the passport section it asks “Permission to reside in another country? “No” or “Yes, country:” Last I checked passports don’t say if you can or cannot live in another country.  I checked mine and there were no restrictions, but at the same time it doesn’t say “which country” I CAN live in.  So, I’m wondering if I have to just wait for my acceptance letter which would technically say I have permission to live in Sweden.  But, that makes no sense as to why it would be under the passport section of the residence permit form…
  2. At the top of the page it says “Dossiernummer” and “Signatur” I assume since it’s above this funky yellow box that it’s probably, maybe for the Swedish people looking at it?
  3. “Address in Sweden”: I don’t have an address yet, and I probably won’t have one until July, but I need this sent in by May or June at the latest, so do I just leave it blank?
  4. At the end it says “Place and date” then next to it it says “Signature (for minors etc., signature of custodian/guardian”, with my stepdad’s explanation it confuses me. I know I’m thinking way too hard about this haha.  But the word I’m wondering about is “Place”, what do I put there?  United States?  Chair in West Lafayette?  Haha, I’ve never seen something like that in a signature section.  I’d understand “date” and “signature” but “place and date”? lol wut?
  5. “Contact Person” at Uppsala.  I know my application TO Uppsala also had this, but I don’t know of any contact person.  Another question I’ll have to bug April about.
  6. How am I supposed to show that I can “support myself for 10 months” via student loans and such, without having the money in my account until like…August?

Lastly, I think I’ll be going to Krannert tomorrow night at around 8pm to go to the “Foreign Travel 101”, where I’m sure I’ll be told the same things I’ve read over and over again, but I’m still excited and I still want to go.  Sadly, I’ll have to record America’s Next Top Model.  Shucks!

And that’s my HUGE post in a super nutshell.  I’m pretty sad all my comments on the things were deleted. I blame Purdue’s internet, which was acting wonky last night as well.