Lidia Galvani Vezzi from Italy

My name is Lidia Galvani Vezzi, Didi, I’m Italian and I have been in New Zealand for the past five months as an international student at Macleans College.

I decided to visit and study in New Zealand when I was only seven, so it has always been one of my dreams. This country has always fascinated me: it has the same shape as mine but it is at the antipodes. I arrived here almost at the end of term 2 with three other Italian students, who stayed for only three months. The first week everybody was already really nice, they helped me not to get lost around the school and asked me a lot of questions about my culture and traditions.

I chose to study Maths, Chemistry, English, Spanish and Outdoor Education. The best ones were certainly Chemistry, where I met some wonderful people and had an amazing teacher and Outdoor Education, where we went on hiking and kayaking trips and learned important skills. I also decided to go to the school’s weights room and participate in some activities offered by the environment club after school.

I’m an introvert, therefore at first it has been a little bit difficult to really bond with people, but as soon as the holidays arrived, I went on a trip to the South Island with the agency Kiwiana Tours, and in those 10 days I met the most extraordinary people ever. International students from all over the world, that were spending some months or a year in different schools in Auckland. I also went on other amazing trips, like Hobbiton and Bay of Islands with Kiwiana Tours. Pirongia Forest and Mahurangi Bay with Outdoor Education class.

After the holidays I also started to bond with classmates and kiwi people in the school. I met this group of friends that certainly made my experience here awesome. I’ll be forever thankful to have met them and we are already planning on seeing each other again in a few years.

I had a wonderful time in New Zealand, where I got to know myself way better, I realised what being independent truly means and I put myself out there. I’ve changed most of my habits and have been in contact with so many different and really interesting cultures that will forever be part of my cultural baggage.

Here I found a second family, a place I can call home and that I know will always support me. New Zealand and in particular Macleans College: you have a reserved space in my heart, where all of the memories are core-memories.

Friends, family, teachers, International Department, Kiwiana Tours, thank you for everything. You made my experience here amazing.