June 28th – Roskilde Festival

I came up with the concept of this website because when I was traveling¬† over spring break I had times when I was very uncomfortable. I crossed the boundary outside of my comfort zone. I knew going to Europe would take me outside of my comfort zone, but I couldn’t even imagine the kind of zone I would be in. Everyone always told me, “You’ll be fine! Everyone speaks English.” While that is true, it doesn’t mean that they always speak it. I walk around and all I hear is a sort of jibberish of the Nordic and Germanic languages. Not once have I heard a Romance language (which I have studied and feel somewhat more comfortable with).

Someone will try speaking Danish with me and I’ll say something along the lines of “I don’t speak that,” “I speak English,” or simply “What?” It feels embarrassing and I feel helpless. I can’t tell what anyone is saying. I can only hope that they aren’t gossiping about me.

Coming to the Roskilde festival, I feel so lost. This is unlike anything I could have imagined. It’s what I imagine Burning Man to be kind of like. The festival is its own city and people camp out in their neighborhoods and just sit outside their tents drinking and chilling. People have speakers everywhere; there’s a lot of soundbleed. People have themed camps, some more decorated than others. There are flags of all sorts everywhere. I found a confederate flag, which made me upset a bit. I found a USA and a Mexican flag, but that camp was filled with neither Americans nor Mexicans.

Fourth of July is coming up. I’m feeling real homesick. Who will get excited with me? Will I even celebrate? I’m starting to miss American food, especially Tex-Mex. I miss spices. I miss English being the norm. I miss my American traditions.

I miss bass music and crazy electro music. I can’t quite describe what people play here. They play everything. I went to a major lazer themed party at a camp. That was fun.

I’m tired of feeling alone and lost. I am way out of my comfort zone, it’s getting easier but it’s still hard and uncomfortable. I can only hope this unsettling feeling subsides and I can enjoy myself the rest of this week.

Tivoli Park

Thursday (June 24th) we went to the Tivoli park in the heart of Copenhagen. It’s a little amusement park with rides, shows, animals, and more.

There was one big steel coaster, called “The Demon” and it had a loop and some barrel twists in it. There were some smaller roller coasters that weren’t as exhilarating, but still fun.

Ferris Wheel at TivoliFerris Wheel at Tivoli





At one point we visited “The Fun House” or as we later called it “Satan’s Hellhole.” It was a playscape that was very difficult to navigate through because everything moved and would throw you off your direction. The steps to climb up would move up and down on both sides. So all the right steps would be moving down as all the left steps were moving up. The bridge was propelled up and down. There was the hamster wheel of death, where I actually hurt my shoulder a little bit. When you walked across this one area there were sections of the ground that was circles and they would spin around all in opposite directions. Plus the whole area was dimly lit. Kids seemed to love it, but we could not wait to leave.

I went on an Octopus-spinny ride, which you can see below.

Overall it was a pretty good day! Thanks Tivoli!

Packing the BackPack

What did I bring with me in my backpack? Quite a few things, I think I may have actually overpacked. Granted these are my only possessions I will have for the next couple of months, most of what I brought are things that are of low worth to me. Clothing that I am okay with throwing out if (and probably when) I buy more; clothing I am okay with getting soiled. I brought small travel sized containers of my toiletries, because I know I will buy or borrow most of what I need overseas. I brought towels that can double as blankets, etc etc. Read below to find my detailed list!

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IcelandicAir Review

This was my first plane going internationally. I’ve flown to Hawaii before, which has a similar set up, 2 seats, 3 seats, 2 seats per row. I like the big planes, I feel less claustrophobic and I like the wideness of the larger jets.

I paid $314 to fly from O’Hare Chicago to Reykjavik to Copenhagen. Two separate flights with a layover in Reykjavik, Iceland. About 6 hour flight to Iceland and another 5 hours to Denmark.

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My first passport stamp

I landed in Iceland around 3:30am US central time, or 8:30am Iceland time. This is my first and only layover on my way to Copenhagen. The flight was a little less than 6 hours and I slept pretty much the whole time. I rode Icelandic Air and was honestly probably the nicest flight I had ever been on, more about that later.

The real story: Within 5 minutes of being in the airport, I already had lost my phone. I left it in the bathroom like a dumbass. I soon realized that my phone was not on me and I frantically searched my bag and ran back to the bathroom. The bathroom was all white and felt like ¬†maze with its floor to ceiling doors and multiple corridors. I searched every stall. I talked to the service desk and they said they hadn’t had anything turned in. I ran back to the bathroom just in case. I approached this lady walking nearby and asked her if she had seen anything. She was so sweet, she tried calling and texting, but I wasn’t expecting anything to come of it. My phone was off, I hadn’t connected to the wifi yet and I had no idea if it would ever return.

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To get a Visa

Getting my student visa was stressful. I thought, “Oh yeah getting all my papers together will be easy! I can do it a few days before I need to go.”

no. no you can’t.

To get my student visa I needed the following:
*Disclaimer* Do not use my list as YOUR list, as other countries may require more or less or different documents. This is simply an example list. Continue reading “To get a Visa”

Getting a Visa is STRESSFUL

You don’t need a visa to enter every country. US citizens are allowed in the Schengen area for up to 90 days without obtaining a visa. I’m spending 4 months studying in Italy, so yes I’ll need a student visa.

I had to drive to Houston to do an in-person interview, which wasn’t an interview at all. I just sat across from a visa officer, looking at her through a glass window and handing her all my papers. She yelled at me a bit for everything not being perfect. I had print outs of all my official documents, and one of them the signature wasn’t very dark. I emailed the document to her and that seemed to have worked. At least I hope.

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A beautiful moment

I’m here in the second city of Chicago hanging with my friends, attending the Spring Awakening music festival.

It was a day full bass, trap, dubstep; so much that we had to take a break and go to the techno/house stage which was the only one not playing the aforementioned. We went on a water slide, we hung out at the silent disco, and met a TON of amazing people.

The most amazing thing happened during deadmau5 though. I’ve always thought deadmau5 was a jerk, and he is, I’ve seen him be an ass. His music and composition is beautiful though. He ended his show with Strobe and it was absolutely beautiful. So beautiful in fact that I had to write about the moment as it was happening.

“Watching deadmau5 play strobe and just thinking how he may be a jerk but his music is truly beautiful. The lights and sounds are so in sync. I feel at peace. No negativity. I see people around a little Intoxicated but I don’t judge. As long as they are okay. I see a couple just look at each other in happiness and it’s so beautiful. Someone jumps over a sitting girl and luckily he lands is okay; but it’s so fun and playful. The weather is awesome. The wind is blowing perfectly. And beautiful calming music is flowing through my body.”

I have to mention here that yes I was sober, so this feeling was all natural and not created. In the coming days of the festival I hope to experience this peaceful and exciting feeling more. I came to this festival mostly to hang out with friends and experience good vibes, and so far I’m getting exactly what I came here for.

Getting paid to go to a concert?

That’s right! Through a mutual friend I was hooked up with a job working security for the X Games during their music portion of the event. Blink-182 and All Time Low were playing. While I’m not a hardcore fan or anything, I still know most of their songs from being an avid fan in middle school, and so I sang along while I worked most of the time.

I got to chat with patrons and fans, most of which were really cool and had so much passion. They told me about how they liked to skate and were sad most of the competitions for saturday got rained out. Others said they drove from Dallas, Brownsville, Houston, and all over Texas to see Blink-182 play (the cost was only $60 compared to some other shows with ticket prices up to $200, plus you get to experience the X Games).

Since most of the patrons weren’t ridiculously drunk, and only mildly intoxicated, it made for a really easy security shift. No one was pushing, everyone cooperated, and the most I had to do was tell people not to walk down this hill to the exit (and instead go around to the less muddy and slippery area).