By Adelina Badea, Career Advancement Program (CAP) Ambassador Scholar

Romanian Trainee and Ambassador Scholar Adelina Badea has been in the U.S. now for over a month. Though many challenges are faced by all our participants, Adelina’s most shocking difference has been moving from her temperate Romania to dry, hot, Tucson Arizona. She’s taken her new life at the Canyon Ranch Tucson head on and has already experienced the diversity of nature, cultures, and life the U.S. has to offer!

One month ago my life was kind of perfect. I lived in a nice city in Romania, I had a nice job (I was working as  a ticketing agent in a travel agency) and I had many friends. But it wasn’t enough for me, I always felt like I had to explore more, to see how other people live and to learn about other cultures . So I chose to apply for an internship in USA.

After one month in USA my life is completely changed, my home now is in  Tucson, Arizona. I left my temperate climate, where I lived my whole life, for a desert climate which is so very new for me. My first impact when I arrived here it was the heat. I never thought I will be able to live with 105 Fahrenheit degrees(after one month I am still not used with this Imperial Unit system), so every day I thank Willis Carrier for inventing Air Conditioning because now our life is much easier. I can’t imagine life in Arizona without an A/C.

The second impact was the environment, here there are so many mountains, but where are the forests? These mountains are covered by very large cacti I have never seen before in my life. So every day instead of parks with trees I see these wonderful Saguaro cacti which are found exclusively in Sonora Desert. I can say I have never seen before such a beautiful sky with such wonderful colors, I can’t get enough! Every day is like I see a new painting with the world’s most beautiful colors.

The cultural impact is not that big, maybe because I am used to travel and I saw different European and Arabic cultures so it is nothing to shock me. I am glad to live in Arizona because I can see how American people live and also interact with the Mexican population. Here in Tucson the Mexican community is large and I still have many things to discover about the culture.

The area is wonderful but I am not used to living in a city like Tucson, it is not a very big city but it’s spread out. Living here without a car is harder than living in a compact city where public transportation is more developed. So my first goal is to buy a car with my roommate and to start to discover the surroundings.

Even without a car, Adelina is exploring the new area!

Even without a car, Adelina is exploring the new area!

I love the area because it is so different from my country. I got used to the temperature, but I am still not used to living without a car. I know my life here is just starting and I can hardly wait to see what my future holds for me.