There were ups and downs on this trip. From missing a few trains, being stranded in a train station in Venice, living in no air conditioning, and taking 4 minute showers, I have to say that this trip wasn’t easy. Mentally and physically, I am exhausted. Even though this has been one of the most draining months of my life, it’s without a doubt been the most rewarding. I think that personal growth is something that I’ve been trying to work on lately. In Austria though, I’ve been forced into living the life I’ve wanted to live for a while.
1. I’ll start being more environmentally conscious. I will turn off the water while brushing my teeth, and recycle (I know I should of started doing this a LONG time ago). Being in Europe made me realize that we need to take care of our earth and that I take for granted having free water. I am coming back to America GREEN.
2. I’m smarter than I thought. I like to think that sometimes I freak out too easy, but in high-stress situations, I learned to keep my cool, and I made decisions to get us to where we needed to be.
3. I’ll take the time to slow down. There’s no reason I should
rush home from work to do absolutely nothing. Why not take
the long way and look at trees instead?
4. Turn the phone off. I thought I wasn’t that attached to
my phone, until we I didn’t have service or Internet access. Because I couldn’t mindlessly scroll through social media, I had so much more time to watch birds or take a walk or catch up on a good book.
5. Make. The. Bed. It takes ten seconds, and the room feels so much more put together.
And with that I will end this post by saying “THANK YOU EUROPE!” Studying abroad has been the most amazing experience and I am forever grateful for this opportunity.
I just want to say that, in Italy, you can only buy bus tickets at
tobacco stores. Don’t ask me why, I don’t understand it either.
The problem with this, is that we wanted to take the 8am bus
to Venice, but tobacco stores don’t open till 9. Again, I don’t
After our short wait to buy tickets, we ventured to Venice via bus and boat. The problem with Venice is that it’s relatively small, and extremely popular. With each new boat docking, hundreds of thousands or tourists were flooding into the city. Everywhere we turned, there was a small alleyway packed wall-to-wall with people taking pictures and haggling for ugly hats. It made it dif cult to see Venice in it’s entirety. Even though it was gorgeous, and I’m beyond happy that we got to experience it, I was reminded so much of Lichtenstein: I was stuck in a huge tourist trap. I’d also like to mention that I accidentally spent 7€ on a glass of wine.
I almost enjoyed our time a er Venice the most. Of course we’re all going broke, so we thought our best bet would be to go to a grocery store and get things to make dinner. I was so happy to finally be able to cook again, I’ve been anxious to make something since we got here. It was a great end to the day, sitting with friends and eating pasta fresh off the stove.
Bregenz is a quaint town, filled with elderly people and well behaved dogs. In the mornings, the city is still, the birds are chirping, and you can hear Lake Constance doing what lakes typically do. There’s houses nested in the mountain, and children walking to school by themselves.
Here, time moves slower. No matter how many things are on
my schedule for the day, I still somehow have time for a short
walk or a well needed coffee and croissant break.
In Louisville, even though it’s not necessarily a big city, I’ve watched the last three years of my life fly away from me. I’m always going, always rushing, always in a hurry. I’ve forgotten how lovely it is to stroll down the street and pick a few flowers. I’ve forgotten the calmness of a coffee shop with tables outside.
Being in Bregenz has forced me to stop and take a breath. In the short month we’ve been here, I feel like I’ve lived more life than being in my apartment at school. A part of me is nervous to go back. I don’t want to give up these short hikes, afternoon coffee on the balcony, and shopping at the market every Tuesday.