Catarina’s Arrival in Leeds

Catarina Padilla 4So I’m here in my new town and country. Leeds, England. January it is. Cold. Super cold. A girl from Rio can really feel the temperature difference. But yeah.. Anyway. I need to buy clothes, bed sheets, pans and plates. How am I gonna do this?! I’ve never lived by myself.

I was staying in temporary accommodation (Montague Burton), and well I need to say… I didn’t like it. The room was so small, I had to share a bathroom and the kitchen was disgusting but all my thoughts were “in a week I’ll be in my real accommodation and is going to be great. The day finally arrived; was a Monday. I  had 4 suitcases and my backpack to carry.

Finally inside my room (Leodis). My new bed was great, the bathroom was perfect, I had a clean desk and it was the perfect size. Everything was indicating that yes, from that Monday on I would have a new life. I had to make friends, I thought. I need people around me. So I went to one of the million events that the Uni organizes for study abroad students.

Catarina Padilla 6

And during that event I meet my first friends: Claire, Holly, Katrina and Loic (he was my roommate). They were amazing. I knew I would stay friends with them forever. In the end of my first week I knew who I would like to be close with. The names? Well, the four that I told already + Camilla, Charlotte, Tommy. They were the first gang. Of course that my roommates became my family so Grace, Chris, Caitlin, Gen and Loic automatically won a piece of my heart.

Ok, I had friends. Now I needed to transform the room I was staying in MY ROOM. With my characteristics. And well, I did that. Photos on the wall, beautiful bed sheets, towels that matched with my personality and little by little my room got a proper decoration. I was proud of myself to be honest… I never could imagine that I would be able to transform a little square into my new home.

The kitchen was fine, I bought my cutlery, plates, pans, pots and food and I was settled. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy.

Catarina Padilla 8The thing is: the first night will be terrifying. I’m sorry but I need to tell the truth. You’ll spend the whole night crying – or most of it -, you will probably think about going back to your home country but take a deep breath, get some sleep and you will be fine. Wanna know why?

Because the next day, you will meet people, new people, amazing people. And you will spend all of your time with them, going out, eating, drinking, chilling, living. So dear, don’t worry. You will survive the first week and you will enjoy it, afterwards.

At least, you’ll have a story to tell.

by Catarina Simões Padilla – Rio Pontificia Universidade Catolica – Brazil

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