I have had many wonderful experiences in Portland. I met a lot of people and made many friends. I think that studying abroad was hard, but it was the most important experience for me because I was able to learn a lot of things.
When I arrived in Portland, I could speak English a little bit, so I couldn’t understand what they were saying. At first I just smiled or laughed when I talked with my host family, in order to pretend that I understood what they were talking about. So, I had to study hard to improve my English. I took 4 classes each term. I studied hard every day. Teachers gave us many homework assignments in every class, and we had a lot of quizzes and tests. Therefore, I had to study outside the classroom almost every day. I had never studied this much, so it was very hard for me. Now, I am used to studying every day. Studying a lot was good for me to improve my English skills.
I sometimes spent time with my new Japanese friends, but I often went to the gym to play basketball with people from various countries, such as Americans, Chinese students and so on. I had to speak English to communicate with them, and thanks to it I could improve my English. Playing basketball gave me chances to speak English with Americans and to build a lot of relationships.
It was great experience for me. I recommend studying abroad to everyone. If you go abroad to study, you will have new perspectives on things and your life will be better.