Spending a period of time abroad has always been something I really wanted to do since I was in University. But I must admit that finding myself on the other side of the world it was a bit of a shock at first, even if I had made a well thought out choice.

The first few weeks passed and I had less and less problems and difficulties, my enthusiasm would wipe away the fear of not being on top of it.
Even the sadness of being away from home and my loved ones was lessened by days full of work and news: I was euphoric!
I was expected to attend courses, refresher trainings, cadaver lab, meetings. And also evening journal club, thematic lessons, in short, it was like a bombardment of information every day, a totally new way of relating to work and integrating it into my life. Indeed, the message seemed to be: experience the work as part of your life, a job that you won’t put aside because it’s 8 pm, but that can be experienced in a way that won’t make you feel drained, but enriched.

And this is what I tried to do.

Besides the John Hopkins University, where I had the chance to meet Professor Ficke, chair of Orthopedics, a well-mannered and helpful person who accompanied me throughout my year, I spent my days mainly between two large centers: the Union Memorial Hospital under the guidance of one of my tutors, Dr. Lew Schon, and The Mercy Hospital, where I was taken by the hand by my other teacher Mark Myerson.

In this context, I met other Fellows whom I became close friends with and with whom I’m still in touch. Eric, Paul and Rob at the Union Memorial Hospital. Jon, Tab and Ettore at the Mercy Hospital. Actually during my year in Baltimore I met many more people, all young doctors like me. Every week I’d meet someone new. I met Fellows from all over the world: Germany, China, Mexico, England, South Africa, Argentina, Korea, Brazil. A whirlwind of people gravitating around these two gurus of foot and ankle orthopedics.

All this made our exchange of views even more interesting, full of cultural considerations such as how a single “subject” or “science” like medicine and in particular orthopedics could, with their instructions and classifications, bring together so many different people, who all find themselves united in diagnosing and evaluating various diseases with the same standards and treatments.

This gave me determination and made ​​me realize even more that I was in the right place, guided by two of the most expert foot and ankle orthopedists in the US!