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Hello! You are probably not wondering, “Esther, I never see you in university anymore! How come?” or “I never see you working anymore!” But yes. I haven’t been to university for about 3 weeks? And I quit my job back in April lolol. It isn’t much but I feel like I’ve been on holiday forever XD not that I’m complaining!
The reason is because: I am going to New York alone for a semester for exchange! Yay! I leave on Sunday the 18th of August NZ time. Scratch that yay. I am very nervous and a worrier. I am worried that I’m going to miss my interconnecting flights, I’m going to lose my luggage and when I get there I will have the worst 5 months of my life. Those are genuinely my expectations at the moment. So when it goes to shit I can always say “I knew this would happen” and be very happy when it does work out! It keeps me very on edge and alert. And worried :/ :/ :/ :/ I am so glad that my flight is at the night. If it was in the morning I would not be able to sleep the night before :/
A lot of my friends know this. But what most, if any of my friends don’t know is the why I chose to go on exchange to New York. My friend once asked me why, and she said when she told her dad he also asked why I was going.
The reasons are: I find university uninspiring, disenchanting, mechanic and depressing. The other reason is that I always want to have new experiences and go out of my comfort zone. The third is that I am obsessed with the thought of living life without doing everything I wanted, and I always wanted to go to America, so the first opportunity that popped up I grabbed.
Before university, in college or high school, I had this fantasy of university being fun, interesting, that I would learn so much new stuff, that I would have freedom both in the literal and creative sense. I thought it was a place where everyone was encouraged to be smarter, and have fun learning what they wanted to learn. But… I don’t think university is like that at all. Maybe it used to be, but I find it so boring and uninteresting. I see people on tumblr making posts about how regimented and mechanic high school is but dude! I think university is WAY more robotic than high school! I think it squashes creativity even more!
Whenever I do an assignment which is almost always an essay I always feel so controlled and hopeless. Because I am writing for a marking schedule. My tutor already has a list of what is definitely right, and definitely wrong. Except I have no clue what is right and what is wrong. And I just write whatever and pray pray pray it’s right. I want so very much to fit into the box because I want good grades, creative freedom be damned. And what makes it ironical is that most of the time, my essays are about creativity, or theories that other people have created. I have no room to ponder, no room to think creatively myself and it is not wanted. I feel stifled by the structured lecture outlines, vague assignment questions and essay deadlines. I don’t even mind working under pressure, it’s just that I have NO IDEA what I should be working on since this is all “self directed learning.” And yet ANOTHER contradiction! This is supposed to be “self directed learning” but yet I have to produce work that has to conform to a strict list of things I should be writing about!
It’s such a system. University to me is like I’m on a conveyer belt in a factory, get in, work/write for the man, get out with a degree.  It’s quite normal to go to university now. I wanted my student experience to be more special than that. I wanted a highlight in my university time. I don’t want a university experience that is identical and as… monotonous as my peers. I didn’t want my memories of university to be what I have described it so far. I want it to be special. So I will remember it as the time I went to America for the first time! I’m young, I want to broaden my horizons while I can. So when people ask me why I’m going, I always think, why wouldn’t you? Why do you want to spend 3 years of your life miserable and just going along with a flow you don’t really want to go along with that everyone else is? I want my university time to stand out just a little bit from everyone else, in memories and even in my CV. I know I’m not the first person to ever go on exchange haha, but I just want to be a teeny tiny different lol 🙂
My next reason: I have a weird thing for going out of my comfort zone, creating new experiences and getting away from my parents XD. I think it’s because I saw in a program that when you get out of your routine and have new experiences, you think more and become a little smarter. And I would rather get a little smarter than not XD so I always want try go to new restaurants and do new things. And I like learning new things, even if it is what another dish on the menu tastes like. Oh yeah, and I used to always dream of being away from my parents. I always used to say how I wanted to move away forever to the U.S or England or something. Now that I am very close to separating I am appreciating my parents and New Zealand more wtf D: I always used to be ‘can’t wait to leave this house’, ‘can’t wait to leave this country’ but now I’m like, this is my home and I don’t want to live anywhere else D: I think it’s because I finally see countries for their actual living conditions instead of when I was younger and thought of the UK and US as NZ with better shops and more people. But now I’m like, what about my friends? My family? I don’t think I could leave New Zealand forever. I don’t think there is a better place to live, even if New Zealand doesn’t have a Sephora or Forever 21. 
See? I’m already learning more about myself and reevaluating who I really am haha.
Last reason: I don’t know about you, but have you heard what the young ones are saying lately? I stumbled across a curious phrase. You probably haven’t heard of it. It is this “Y.O.L.O.” It stands for “you obviously love Onew”
Ignore that only my kpop girlies (and the rare kpop boy) will get it haha
No really, you only live once waah big surprise never heard of that before and that’s the motto n word yolo and we bout it erryday errday
I am very paranoid that I’m going to die without doing everything I wanted. I don’t mean die prematurely I mean actually die of old age :/ I don’t want to be the sort of person that says “I really want to go to America” and repeats it until the day I die ok. Nothing gets done until you actually do it. Noone’s going to take me to America from the chances I have right now. I don’t know, maybe in the future my job lets me go to America, maybe I meet someone who will go to America with me, maybe I win free tickets to America. And maybe none of that will ever happen, and I don’t want to see if it does or not in case the chance never comes. So I have the opportunity and chance now, so I’ll take it. I’m turning 20 this year, that’s not that young to go by myself. I have many other places I want to go to, if I can start now that would be great. I guess I could go when I’m retired at 65 with lots of money but then I would be old and tired and my photos would look ugly XD And who says “I’m going to America when I’m retired.” And plus someone read my palm and said I would have a short life XD I don’t believe him but hey, reinforces the YOLO.
To sum it up, I want to show my grandkids my photos of when I was in America and I want them to say “wow you looked so young/beautiful/pretty” instead of telling them “grandma used to want to go to America” or showing them photos where I’m old. And over… I say… 40 is old, okay XD
Other places I want to go to, in order, preferably before the age of 40
1.       Korea- because I have to visit the country that my ultimate love of my life Taemin walks the ground of and breathes the air of okay. And I am very interested in South East Asian culture and Korea is very cultural! And I want to eat all the food and buy all the face masks and makeup and clothes.
2.       Japan- Ramen. Convenience store. Cake buffet. Sakura. Geiko. Cat café. Hello Kitty. Temples. Fooooooooddd!!!
3.       Italy- used to be number one before I was interested in Asia, because before I was interested in culture and religion in South East Asia, I was interested in religion and how Christianity started. I was/am still slightly fascinated by Catholicism and all their rituals and stuff. I want to go to Vatican City! And Rome! And see all the historical stuff!!! Man I love historical stuff. Dat history <3
4.       Wherever Machu Picchu is… Is it in Brazil…or Mexico..? *shot in the dark. Ultimate history and culture feels okay first Aztec settlement ever (hope I’m right). But I am not concerned about whether I go to Machu Picchu or not because I heard you have to walk there and climb up the damn thing and I would seriously faint after a kilometre, I am not lying. I will tell you my fainting stories another day.
You know what used to be there? America.
(I have just come to the realisation that I am crossing off a bucket list. Fuck I’m morbid I really am worried about dying unhappily and unrestfully)

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