Lessons of a one-year stay in the United States

Post written by Orsolya Hernold

I have just finished reading my journal I wrote 20 years ago – an experience I wish for all of you to have. I am uplifted, very grateful for the 16-year-old Orsi for being disciplined to write this diary – all the fun, the challenges and the everydays of an important year of my life captured in a small blue booklet. Let me share with you some things I learnt while reading my journal of my travel.

First of all, the whole year was an immense cultural shock: this was in the early 90’s, I was an exchange student from an Eastern European country in the United States. Rereading my journal enabled me to see how important this year was in my self-development, basically I became an adult there. Here is a summary of my lessons:


I was 16 at this point and I am glad that I kept on with writing my journal of my travel and I could relive these experiences now. Although I only recorded the happenings, I could still easily summarize my key learning points. If I set out to live again abroad, I would write a journal with a focus:

This year changed me on many levels. The pictures, stories preserved in my diary are cornerstones of my development I still draw upon.


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