Olivia’s First Semester: Lost

Today was the first day that I did not get lost going to a new place. I walked to the supermarket, and surprisingly did not end up somewhere in the complete opposite direction. I know this may not seem like a major accomplishment, but for the past 3 weeks, no matter where I was going, I have gotten lost.

First Semester as a study abroad student in Rome, getting lost in Rome, study in Italy, Trastevere, how to find your way around RomeThe fact that I get lost so often is pretty ironic, considering that Rome is where I feel I am finding myself. The friends I have made who live in Rome are constantly asking me to meet them places. They will call me and say things like, “Meet us at the Piazza, you know, the one near the big white church” as if that narrows it down at all. So I constantly find myself walking in circles and having to ask people on the street for directions. Most of the time, I can’t even understand what they are saying. So I wander around, but somehow I always end up finding the place I am looking for. Sometimes, I start to panic, and as I turn around to head home, I coincidently end up “at the Piazza, you know, the one near the big white church.”

I can’t help but think of this as a metaphor of my life right now. I spent the last few years of my life feeling sort of lost. Not knowing where I wanted to go to college, what I wanted to do or who I wanted to be. Then, I followed a path and ended up in Rome. For my first two weeks here the only directions I knew were from my apartment to the John Cabot campus. Anywhere else I had to go, I got lost. Sometimes it was frustrating, other times it was surprisingly beautiful. But either way, I would find a street, travel down it, and end up exactly where I needed to be. And I am starting to realize…that’s life.

Olivia Austin
Communications Major
JCU Class of 2016
New Jersey, USA

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