My coach bus to Swansea finally arrived; it was now time to leave London. I’ve never been to the UK before, so I was very excited to be able to lean my head against the window and take in all the sights from London to Swansea. That’s actually one of my favourite things about this exchange so far: pretty much everywhere I go is new to me, so I’m constantly observing my surroundings. Every day is a brand new day! (cliche, but it’s true)
Anyways, I made sure to choose a seat on the right side of the bus so that, as I just said, I could take in all the sights. However, as soon as we left the bus pick-up area and hit the streets, I realized I hadn’t made the smartest choice (though to be fair, I was quite tired); people in the UK drive on the opposite side of the road. Clearly things were starting to really set in – I was not at home anymore.
A light rainfall commenced just after we exited London, and my exhaustion began to settle in, as I didn’t get much sleep on my overnight flight. As much as I wanted to take in all of the novel scenery, my eyes just weren’t having any of it. I drifted off to sleep…
When I woke up, we were driving through a tiny town on a hillside (which is probably how hundreds of English towns could be described as). It was kinda funny being in such a large vehicle, navigating through these old streets made for little cars. I decided to go back to sleep once I heard the bus driver announce what the next stop was (not Swansea).
When I woke up from the second nap, I felt like I had been sleeping for ages. The key word is ‘felt’, because in reality we hadn’t even arrived at the next bus station. It should also be noted that the bus ride was only 4 hours total.
I’m going to skip to the most exciting part of the story now: suddenly turning a corner and seeing the lovely city of Swansea in the distance. It was such an amazing feeling…it was as if all of the pictures of Swansea I had looked at online in the months prior to the trip were magically coming to life. I sat up from my sleepy slouch posture, and marveled at everything before me: the sea, the giant hill tucked away with all sorts of houses attached to one another (which I still can’t get enough of), and just…everything. I’m putting myself into a daze right now just thinking back to that moment.
As we pulled into the Swansea bus station, the girl sitting behind me asked if this was Swansea; I told her that I was pretty sure it was, and asked her where she was from. It turned out she was an exchange student from Nigeria, and it was her first day here as well, so we decided to share a taxi to the university campus. We each picked up our residence keys and parted ways to our respective accomodations. Come to think of it, I’ve only seen her once since then, but I imagine she’s doing okay.
Anyways, I walked towards the front door of my new residence, the little old building that it is, and took a deep breath as I took out my key.
I think this is an appropriate time for a cliff-hanger. Next post I promise to finish my move-in story. Hopefully you’ve been able to tolerate my lengthy and sometimes over-detailed story-telling; I just can’t help but feel nostalgic and then my thoughts get all jumbled and this is the result.