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Journals from England 2008

2008-12-10 The Big Show

As Ive mentioned before in previous entries, several aspects of the England study abroad program make it unique. Because our classes are not provided through an official university, we play by their rules, meaning our schedule is a little incongruent with Linfields semester dates. Right now most other programs are wrapping up, and students are preparing to be reunited with their families just in time for the holidays. We, on the other hand, still have six more weeks of our European adventure. For four of these, we are required to move out of our residence halls and, as individuals, find ways to occupy our time before returning for the final stretch. Some of us are going home with British students, but most have decided to take the opportunity to travel. For me, this break is taking the form of a trip through Scotland, France and Spain. Looking back at the past three months, Id say that the majority of learning Ive done has taken place outside of the classroom. Most of it, in fact, has come out of trying to plan this month-long break. Trying to organize the most cost-effective way to maneuver my way around the continent has certainly put all the lessons Ive learned on my regional, weekend trips to good use; in a way, this trip is its own little test, one Im looking forward to for a change! My time will be spent in a mix of hostels, hotels and apartments, in planes, trains and automobiles. Im excited to see all that I can see, but I know that there will be little hiccups along the way. Well just have to wait and see if all my prep work has paid off. No matter what, I know that by the end of break Ill come out with a lot more life experience, and (hopefully) this will translate into resourcefulness in other aspects of my life. More than anything, the opportunity to backpack through Europe as part of my college experience makes me realize how extremely privileged I am, and its up to me to make the most of it! ~Claire

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