By Hung Manh Duong, Class of 2013
I finally got down of the airplane. After 20 hours of sitting, scanning TV shows, and jet lag, Frankfurt international airport in Germany seemed like a release to me. It was below zero when I walked out of the airplane. I immediately scorned myself for wearing only a T-shirt. Well, another note to myself.
Learn how to use the Internet public booth for the first time. It might seem silly to some people but to me, it really is something fascinating. While my parents were busy picking out free-tax souvenirs from the airport, I figured out the way to call home. Talked to my brother for a while. It was such a pity he couldn’t go with us. Maybe next time then when I am a sophomore.
Get on the plane again to go to Chicago after 12 hours waiting in the huge cold lounge. The checking at the transiting airport was so complicated. I was half- dead by the time I sat down on the airplane. A deep sleep soon came after that. I was dreaming about Hanoi again. It was the second time in one day.
The time in Chicago was great. I visited some famous pots like the Shedd Aquarium, the big museum. My parents and I got to see the most beautiful beluga dance ever. After lunch at the Inn, we walked along Michigan Lake every afternoon during our 4 days there. It was called a lake but it looked like a mini beach to me with the sand trailing along the shore and people swimming and sunbathing. I love the sunlight here. It is not harsh but comfortable. The nightlife in Chicago was very much enjoyable. Took a horse-drive around the town. Learn many things about it while my dad was taking as many photos as he could (laugh).
Finally it came the day to leave Chicago. It was only a 1-hour flight to Indianapolis so it didn’t seem so long. The first person to greet me was Mr. David Clapp- the director of international student. My first impression of him was a friendly old man. He greeted my parents cheerfully. I met another two international students there: Dawit- a guy from Ethiopia and Long Cao- a Vietnamese junior. We shook hands and chat for while. Then they helped me carrying my suitcases to the van. A part of me kept on saying:” This is it. I am finally here! At Wabash!” That sentence kept paying over and over in my head for the whole way from the airport to Crawfordsville.
Crawfordsville turned out to be a small town, not really up to my expectance. The downtown was small, too. Most of the things I saw were cornfields and little antique shops. Still, tit gave me a homey feeling. I have never seen the sky so big and blue before…
Arrived at the Beta house, the place I signed up when I first came here. All the guys were friendly and welcoming. Said goodbye to my parents was the hardest part. It just seemed hard to part but it was the needed thing to do. I watched as the car moved away with my parents in it. I knew dad was sighing again and mom probably cried. But this is the road I chose and I have to stick with it. I tuned to the house and walked in. Yeah, this probably summed up my first few days in US. And I believe there might be more to come.