SANTIAGO, CHILE–Wednesday, junior Alison Garnett spending this fall abroad became extremely spiteful after reading an email offering free Ike’s sandwiches at a student event back home on the Farm.
“Damnit!” she exclaimed, “no one offers me anything for free anymore…these authentic Chilean home-cooked meals provided by my host family are really getting old! Can you imagine what an incredible experience it would be to get food without paying for it?”
Garnett is not alone; abroad students are beginning to confront the idea that their travels may not end up being everything they had hoped.
In Berlin, Germany, Charles Gardner claims, “The city is new and all, and I guess I’m learning things, but, like, where’s Cardinal Nights when you need it?” And from Kyoto, Japan, Katie Crossman complains, “People all treat me like I’m from some foreign country or something. I don’t mean to sound ungrateful, but back at Stanford people treat me more like a friend. Mostly because all my friends are there.”
One can’t help but feel for these struggling students, trapped in colossal, unfamiliar cities filled with dirty foreigners who speak strange languages and eat weird food. Garnett seemed to sum up the sentiment most eloquently when she said, “I’m so conflicted! I mean, you try to take advantage of opportunities…but, this? Did I go abroad the wrong quarter? I could have just stayed home and gone to Chipotle a few times. Close enough.”
Garnett ultimately took a wise approach to minimize her woes. After considering a cost-benefit analysis on making a quick trip to the states for a menage-a-trois on dutch crunch, she instead removed herself from the many on-campus lists that tempt her with offers of free food.