Studying Abroad in the UK (Lockdown Edition) – Ibrahem AlBadareen

Our second story from our exchange students comes from Ibrahem AlBadareen, who, despite being extremely unlucky with lockdowns, quarantines and isolations, found lots of positives in his experience.

Living in the UK for 3 months was like living in a dream for me. Everything was amazing, even the hard times.
My journey here started when I stepped foot in Manchester airport. I was a bit nervous actually, I had never been to a country where everybody speaks a foreign language, but I was so thrilled by what I felt. I liked that feeling a lot, even if it was mostly fear and anxiety. Shortly all the dark feelings were gone when I talked to the immigration officer, he was so kind. I have found that all British people, especially security staff, are so kind and helpful in that moment and I was so delighted and happy that I’ve been able to come to such an amazing country.

Ibrahem in self-isolation

Soon after I arrived I had to quarantine for 2 weeks. Okay… it was the most boring and annoying time during my stay here, I mean “I am in a new country and it’s one of the best.. I want to go out.. I want to visit new places.. I want to be part of society” but still what warmed my heart was that the university and the Green’s staff were so helpful and tried their best to fulfil our needs and to make us feel comfortable and like at home. The ‘fun’ part is that as soon as the two weeks quarantine ended, a flatmate tested positive and we had to do quarantine for another two weeks and, after that, I had to do move to another flat which also had a flatmate who tested positive. Then, as that third isolation was coming to an end, the lockdown month came about. Still, I think those times made me work on my English the most. I really believe the saying, you sometimes think it’s the wrong and bad but actually, it’s good for you.

What I’m glad of is that the Halloween came about when I had a free week from quarantine 😊 Everything was so amazing. I mean when you go to the shop, when you walk in the streets, even at the dorms, the atmosphere is so awesome everyone is dressing very funny and cute. It’s something that we never had back in my country so it was a great experience for me also I got involved in it, I won’t let a chance of being part of great things slip, and I will leave you to guess what my costume represented 😉

Ibrahem’s Hallowe’en costume

A month after, the Christmas preparations started, I have just come from a trip to London and I’m really glad that I made the trip then. Everything is lit in a way that really brings joy to your eyes and the trees, oh my god I could talk about them the whole day, I mean when you look at one of them sometimes you forget time, your mind goes in a trip, the shape of them, the lights, how adorable they are. It is something that people had not put a lot of attention to back in my country but here the joy really is killing me I mean most of the time I just forget myself in front of one of the trees and my friends have to drag me by force to move 😊.

Ibrahem in London

Oh also let’s not forget the amazing dinner the university prepared for us international students. We are not gifted chefs, and we are living on prepared food now we are away from our families, so we had no chance of cooking a turkey, but the university thought about that and handed us some free turkey meals. It was very thoughtful of them, we really appreciated it 😊

In the end, as I write this, I want to say that my journey is still going, and I am planning to go to Scotland in 10 days after I finish my HomeWorks and projects… I am really grateful to the University of Bradford, UK, Al Balqa Applied University and everyone who made my journey this amazing. From the bottom of my heart, seriously, sincerely Thank you.

Thanks for sharing your story Ibrahem, all the best for the future. See more about study abroad opportunities on SharePoint.