Tonight is my last night in Europe and I am spending it in a hostel room in Milan with a Parisian and a Moldovan/Swede engaging in conversation and laughing a lot. I could not have asked for a better ending for a semester filled with educational moments and unexpectedly enlightening experiences. Although it has been a totally different time compared to Egypt, I feel a similar sadness for the people I am leaving behind (though knowing this brilliant bunch, I’m bound to see at least some of them again– if on the cover of the New York Times) and a nostalgia for the places I’ve seen over this time. I have dipped my toes in many waters this semester and knowing how anxious I was to travel before I left on this grand adventure, seeing so much will only make my list of future destinations longer. After these nearly 9 months, the world feels only bigger, grander, and more beautiful than I have ever seen it. I will be back to all of these places one day, in a different time and in a different context, but with just the same excitement as when I first visited.
Thank you, France, Italy, Spain, Germany, Denmark, the Netherlands, Ireland, Morocco, Egypt, Switzerland, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Austria, and (how could I forget!) Monaco for an unforgettable semester. One day we’ll meet again!
So many people I can understand! This might seem like a preemptive move, considering I’ve spent most of the past year in places that do not have English as their primary language and considering I only have A WEEK left in Europe as of today, but Ireland is a magical and mythical place in my head that I wanted to explore a little, actually for similar reasons to why I went to Egypt. I’ll be here until Friday, when I head back to France and hit up some cathedrals and then swing by Menton before I fly out of Milan on the 29th.
I have very little connection to Ireland itself, but as someone who feels quite connected to my Scottish roots, a Celt is a Celt and my smiling eyes could be Irish, too, for a few days. Tomorrow I plan on sightseeing around Dublin proper and Thursday I’ll head to somewhere outside the city, probably to Howth.
For this trip I brought my laptop so I can write and post a bit more than I have been as well as catch up on things I haven’t finished yet. I had a feeling it’ll be a very rich few days and coinciding with the end of this semester and this year abroad, I’ll have a good deal to write about.
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The guy next to me in the terminal is having a loud skype conversation in a very heavy either Italian or Eastern European accent (not sure yet) with a friend of his, who is busy apparently. “You’re beezee? So cawl mee when yurr feesheeng. Noah, my train was laayd. It was layyd. Layyd! Yes. by an awarrr. yeah, my friend is working there. Eet’s a shop, you know. I don’t know which kind of shop.”
Ok. Time to stop eavesdropping and head into the city!
bachoter: intransitive verb
to prepare hastily and intensely for a test with the only goal being a passing grade, not learning or new knowledge, to cram
As of today, I have three weeks left before I fly back to the US. My tentative plan is to travel after finals end and spend at least a few days exploring the south of France, as I still don’t feel like I know the place very well, aside from Menton. During that time I hope to catch up on all of the posts I intended to write or wrote but never published, including all of my travels, some pictures, general commentary about life in Menton, and a tidbits from here and there that caught my fancy. If you have suggestions or questions, please let me know and I will do my best to respond to them.
I also have been working on a few informal blogging projects this semester, the final results of which I will post when I get back to the States.
Right now I’m not sure if I’m going to keep this blog going after May 29th, since I’ll be back in the States and I started blogging because.. well, take a look at my goals page. I do have a propensity toward seeking out interesting things in ordinary places and who knows if I’ll be inspired to explore my own country and blog about that. What’s your take?