We’ve been asking our International Outreach Ambassadors some questions about how they have adapted to being in the UK. This is how Poetica, a second year Psychology student, who comes from the US, finds living and studying here.
What is the biggest similarity between your hometown/country and Bath/UK?
The UK and the US are fairly similar culturally, especially in terms of how friendly everybody I meet is.
What’s surprised you about moving to/living in the UK?
The weather actually isn’t as horrible as I thought it would be. Everybody told me it was just constantly rainy, and while there are a lot of gloomy days, there’s plenty of sunny ones too.
What do you miss most about your home country? How have you overcome this, was there a positive outcome?
I really miss snow in the winters. In my home state, we’d consistently get several centimetres of snow all throughout the winter and often into the spring. I miss things like snowball fights and sledding and white Christmases. I’ve managed to overcome this by doing other wintery activities that get me in the same mood, like going to Christmas markets or ice skating, and I’ve really enjoyed them. I’m also hoping to one day take a trip to the Alps to see the snow there!
What are your top three things to do in Bath?
My favourite thing to do is hands down going to Bathwick fields (especially in the spring when it’s covered in flowers) and enjoying the view! I also really love going into town for a meal, window shopping with my friends, and exploring all the parks Bath has to offer.
Are you part of any clubs/societies at Uni or in Bath?
I’m on the committee for STAR (Student Action for Refugees). We run campaigns and volunteering activities throughout the year to help refugee families in the Bath area. It’s such a rewarding experience and I’ve met so many lovely people through it.
What do you love most about living in Bath?
I love how it feels like the perfect compromise between a city and a small town. In the city center, there are plenty of stores, history, and activities, and it’s convenient for travel to bigger cities like Bristol or London. But there’s also plenty of nature to enjoy, and the lifestyle is very slow paced.
What’s your favourite place to eat/favourite takeaway in Bath?
Over the last few months, I’ve become absolutely obsessed with Tortilla. Their burritos are my go-to order for whenever I don’t feel like cooking, and the atmosphere inside their restaurant is super nice too. I’m also a huge fan of The Oven, it’s an amazing pizza place and their fluffy crusts are to die for.
What’s the best or worst thing you’ve eaten since being in the UK?
The best thing is hands down anything from Din Tai Fung in London. I’ve tried new dishes every time I’ve gone and all of them are incredible. My favourite is probably the xiaolongbao though.
Is there somewhere in Bath/UK that you’d like to go but haven’t been yet?
In Bath, I’ve been meaning to go see the view from Alexandra Park for ages but haven’t gotten around to it yet. Outside Bath, I’m absolutely dying to visit Edinburgh in Scotland!
What’s your favourite or weirdest UK tradition you have learnt about?
A lot of British people I’ve met have raved about watching a show called I’m a Celebrity around the holidays. From what I’ve heard, celebrities come on the show and are covered in insects or reptiles, as well as completing survival tasks. I’m sure it’s a great show, but I definitely don’t have the stomach to watch that.
What’s your favourite British slang/word?
I’ve picked up a lot of British slang since coming here but my favourite is probably “firm it”.
What’s your top tip for International Students?
Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there! It can be intimidating moving to a new country, but all the British people (and other internationals) I’ve met have been so welcoming and they’re often really eager to hear about your experiences and to learn more about other countries and cultures.