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Yes hello, Renee and Tessa signing in. Although we haven’t actually left the country yet, the two of us are off to the US of A to study abroad in Washington D.C. this coming semester. The university we are attending is literally called American University, and seems to be the most patriotic institution ever. Not kidding, the school colours are red, white, and blue, the mascot is an eagle, and the motto is “pro deo et patria” which directly translates to “God and Country.” Y I K E S.
You’d think that organising to go on an exchange would be easy. Well, fricken guess again pals. The depressing exchange rate, the timezone awkwardness, and the insane student visa application are all parts of the lengthy exchange process. Fun questions in the visa interviews such as “have you ever trafficked organs” and “do you have tuberculosis or infectious leprosy” feature as the weirdest things we’ve ever been asked. Our personal favourite was the foolproof, sure-fire, terrorist-stopping question of “do you plan to engage in terrorist activities while in the United States,” because members of ISIS are obviously going to get to this part of the process and think, “frick guys, they’ve bloody got us. Better pack it up and head home.”
But never fear friends, it’s not all bad. We get to study at an amazing university (where domestic students pay upwards of $62,000 a year) for the price of a yearly Victoria tuition—shout out to Victoria Abroad for hooking us up. Not only that, we will be in the country’s capitol for the wild world of the 2016 US presidential election, LIVE AS IT HAPPENS (Hill yes!). We will also get to experience cliched american holidays such as Halloween, Thanksgiving, and New Years, plus we finally get to experience our first white Christmas (unless climate change strikes).
We both depart the land of the long white cloud this week, so wish us luck, and stay tuned for our fortnightly masterpiece on the ups and downs of living in the land of the “free.”