The time difference between the U.S. and Italy is a challenge, especially when I’m so used to calling my best friends from home mid-morning after a weekend to catch up. I often forget that mid-morning for me is around 4 a.m. for them back home. I feel guilty when I tell my friends that I can FaceTime them late at night and they can’t help but fall asleep. For example, recently my childhood best friend wanted to FaceTime me. I went out to dinner with my roommate and after finishing a bottle of wine at dinner, we were both extremely exhausted and then the next morning, I woke up to a few Facebook messages from her with angry looking emojis. Keeping in touch requires commitment. I’ve even struggled with keeping my parents updated at times.

Both of my parents are awful with technology. My dad thinks that “Twitter” is called “Tweeter.” Before going abroad, many students downloaded texting applications to save money instead of using their data. Two of the most popular ones I know of are called “WhatsApp” and “Viber.” With an application like Viber, you can call, text and video chat anyone in your contact list that has the application. The only problem with the app is its dependency on Wi-Fi. Before leaving, I got both my parents Viber on their phones. Since my dad doesn’t know how to type on his phone, he will speak into it. It’s nice not to have to call my parents since they have the app but when you are abroad, you really should try to call them once a week. They are your parents after all, and they are guaranteed to miss you more overseas compared to being at Fairfield.

For me, group chats have been the easiest way to get through to friends back home. At times, I just want to throw my phone at the wall at night because of the constant group chat messages, but I will never take myself out of one because it’s my window to back home. When I want to FaceTime friends, I usually call them with the application or I will use Snapchat to send videos, though my apartment’s reception always seems to be poor whenever I want to FaceTime someone. Luckily, my friends have been patient with me if we lose connection for a few minutes. Talking to friends is bittersweet because you update them on all your adventures, and they update you on all their adventures at college. It makes me feel valued when my friends call me or text me and ask me when I am coming home and tell me how much they miss me. It feels good to know that your presence is missed, but I only have a short while left while abroad.

Looking down the road, I think of how much I miss home and then I remember that my last week is in the home stretch. For me personally, time is flying and as much as I can’t wait to see my friends and family again, I also can’t wait for the adventures that I will be having in the next few weeks.  I’m excited to come home to a long awaited reunion with stories of my semester abroad that I know will only bring us closer.

About The Author

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.