Thanks to the awesome Transy study abroad program, I have the opportunity to spend my summer in Bregenz, Austria!
As a non-U.S. citizen, I need to receive a visa from the Austrian embassy to enter Austria, a country that I have always wanted to visit. My Monday of this week started really early for me, as I needed to get ready for my Austrian visa interview in Chicago. I woke up at 3:50 a.m. in order to catch my early morning flight at 6 a.m.
My friend in Chicago picked me up from the airport, and we went directly to Chinatown for breakfast. When we arrived in Chinatown, I was amazed by how real Chinatown appeared to be. Every shop sign is written in Chinese, and people walking on the street were all Chinese as well, which made me feel as if I were in China! Unfortunately, most shops were not yet opened when we arrived, so we went to the only opened restaurant.
After breakfast, I went directly to the Austrian consulate in downtown. The downtown area in Chicago was fabulous! Every building has its own unique style, with a combination of modern and European flavor. The streets were crowded with people and vehicles. The excitement and joy brought by the beautiful Chicago cityscape made me forget my tiring flight in the early morning. My visa interview went smoothly. The Austrian officer was very nice. She asked me some questions regarding the application and checked my application materials. The interview lasted about ten minutes.
I then visited Shedd Aquarium in Chicago, which is located near Lake Michigan . I was amazed by so many beautiful animals in the aquarium. I saw otters, octopi, penguins, white dolphins, turtles, a variety of wild fishes and among others. In addition, there was also a special jellies exhibit.
I was impressed by so many kinds of amazing creatures, jellies, with different colors and sizes. I was a little bit over excited when I saw pink jellies, as pink is my favorite color. I also learned a lot about sea jellies. For instance, they do have not bone, and water makes up 95% of their body. Penguins have always been one of my favorite animals because their cute appearance and walking style, like gentlemen. (Haha!) Some of the penguins I saw were lazy and stood still on the rock all the time, which made my friend think that they were fake ones.
Because of the time pressure, I only stayed in the aquarium for an hour and a half. I said “goodbye” to Chicago reluctantly at 4 p.m. and hoped to come back again in the near future!