I did go away to college at 18. It was my mother's dream more than my own. One I failed miserably at, as I was not ready yet to absorb 'higher learning'...So I blew off the first semester, hanging out at a coffee shop at night with an early espresso machine, a beat poet, another guy studying Russian, a couple of drug addicts for friends. It all seemed so exciting to me at the time, and amazingly I came away from it totally unscathed. I drank a lot of espresso but that was my only "drug". I dropped out at the end of the semester, sold my rarely opened books back to the bookstore and went to Berkeley to share an apartment with my older brother who was studying there. I went to work for State Farm Insurance Company as a file clerk. In a year and a half I had saved $1600. I took off on world travels: 3 months in Mexico, then off to Europe and Israel.
Stayed in Israel for five years (meant to be there 5 months)...and the rest, as they say is history.