My stay in Lithuania has really been amazing so far. I get the fact that in a few weeks I may be nauseous with homesickness, but im enjoying things for what they are.
I arrived in Vilnius and was at first worried about where id be picked up, or IF I would be picked up, because I had had faulty internet access for the previous two weeks, so communication with me and Aiste (pronounced Ice-Stuh), my mentor, had been sparse.
So I stayed calmer than I initially thought I would be. sure enough I walked through the gates and a blonde girl stood smiling, holding a piece of paper with my name written in flowery cursive. It was a very warming experience.
Anyway, she picked me up and we wandered around VNO airport for a bit, collecting tickets for busses, looking at maps, translating and exchanging euros for Litas (Lithuania’s currency).
So we took a few busses back to my dormitory, called Olandu (pronounced Olandu), and when we unloaded everything finally it felt really nice to be free of carrying all my luggage and stuff.
By this time it was dark out, oh yeah, btw, its chilly here. Imagine Kansas weather as Autumn slips lazily into winter, and that’s what Lithuanian weather is like. Temperatures for turtle necks (sp?) and sexy-jeans, kind of weather.
So yeah, me and Juste walked a mile down the road to a grocery store called Maxima. The grocery stores here are called Maxima X (the smallest store), Maxima XX (medium), and finally Maxima XXX (largest, and comically from the outside looks like a store name that you’d see in the shady parts of paris.) anywho, so we went to maxima 1 and ambled through the aisles. Juste made fun of me for being girly, simply on the grounds that I bought a stupid soap bar “Rosy Silk Garden” and then shampoo “Citrus Melon Relaxation”…and few other things that happened to be pink hued or whatever. Rude.
So we came home and she made me some delicious food, as seen on my facebook, then we like talked about the city and tours and such.
So the next day was a good lesson too. Because I hadn’t talked to my mentor, I was in a foreign country and had no internet access and no phone, we literally could not communicate. So I left with Iohan the next morning, bc he was going with Birute, his mentor. So I went with him and we met Birute, who turned out to be so gracious and patient with us and helped us figure out all our stuff (student cards, paper work, money, getting grocieries, etc). so yeah we did that for most of the day and we also met up with Valentas Bertašius and he was again, just such a cool dude, so willing to help us and his mentorees, walking us around this city, etc.
We went for lunch at a cool little café and at this point it was me and Iohan and our new friend from Germany, Lu Isa and Valentas.
Afterwards we split ways and then met up with my long lost mentor, Aiste, and she, like all the other mentors, was exceptionally sweet and patient. She had just gotten back from a 2.5 month trip out of the country, literally within the previous 24 hours, and despite that she was amazing to us. very thankful for her kindness. she took us grocery shopping and helped us get phone cards and all that other crud.
Long story short about that first full day, was that it was really great to share the new experience of Vilnius with people our age who were so enthusiastic and excited and maybe anxious. This has been such an amazing experience…