There were butterflies in my stomach as it was going to be my first journey abroad. Although the International Office had been very supportive throughout; still I was nervous. Finally the day came when I had to board the flight for the UK. All through the flight I was tensed as to how the new place, new friends, and of course the weather would be. But surprisingly, all these tensions vanished the moment I met the University representatives (Meet and Greet) at Heathrow airport. I received a very warm welcome from them right from the airport till the time I reached my halls of residence. I felt highly grateful to the residence support team as they came to my hall to demonstrate how the various appliances in the kitchen are to be used. The following day, I attended welcome events and various lectures including a banking session. The different sessions were very helpful for settling in.
I attended numerous events organized by the various societies, the SUSU and my department’s induction in the first week. All these helped me to make lots of friends from different corners of the world. The Southampton dock could be seen from my department’s café. It’s an amazing view when the sun rays sparkle on the water. Free periods can be effectively spent by simply seeing the ships coming and going away from the docks. It did not even take a day for me to get acquainted with the supermarkets in the town and also the city centre is a wonderful place to stroll round. In the second week, I was invited to attend the welcome event for the Commonwealth Scholars of the University. It was another lovely event organized by the International Funding Officer, who is a wonderful person I have met. Right from getting familiar with the various sterling coins to the various travelling options, she is of immense help.
I have also joined the India Society of the University. I never thought that I would celebrate the Indian festivals here with the same level of enthusiasm and vigour as I had in India.
Lovely weather and of course awesome people! I did not even realize that it’s been a month that I am here in Southampton and gradually I could see Autumn setting in and very soon winter will be knocking at our doors (as I am being told). The first thirty days have just been awesome and I am very eagerly looking forward to more fun-filled days here in Southampton.