My European Travels (so far)10:31 AM
One of the perks of being a language assistant (other than the fabulous students) are the many breaks that occur throughout the school year....
One of the perks of being a language assistant (other than the fabulous students) are the many breaks that occur throughout the school year. If you look at my work contract for example, you will be surprised to find out that almost 50% of my stay includes paid vacations. Naturally, this means for my travel addict self that I have to explore the world. Just one catch. My vacation is for two weeks. Now for someone that might live in Europe (I'm talking to you- British Council assistants), I do not have the luxury of taking a train or plane to Rome for example for a weekend holiday. So, I did what many Americans do: cram and see as many locations as possible within Europe in a short amount of time. Here is the breakdown of the trip my friend and I took for two weeks
London: Three night, two days
Dublin: Two nights (one day in town, another day on the west coast for the Cliffs of Moher)
Brussels, Belgium: Three nights, two days
Gent, Belgim: Day Trip
Milan: Two nights, one day
Bologna: Day trip
Florence: Two nights
Genova: Day trip
Nice: Two nights
In the span of two weeks we somehow managed to visit five countries and ten different towns ON OUR OWN. We didn't use a tour company or follow a study abroad group. We simply looked at a map of places we wanted to visit, checked prices on Ryainair, and crossed our fingers that we were making the right decisions. Sure, we had traveled around America on our own as adults, but this was really the first time that we had successfully managed to create a long term trip together. Though there were nights that I would have rather been at home instead of a hostel with twenty people in a room , I can honestly say that this trip was an experience of a lifetime. I got to see, meet, and of course eat so many wonderful and new things while traveling (which I'll explain further in my next blog post). I won't lie and tell you that my travels were always glamorous.
For two weeks I lived out of a carry on suitcase, had a twisted ankle, and could be found in airports at 4 am in the morning searching for a coffee stand. But it was worth it. I wouldn't take back any of the experiences that we had traveling those two weeks together because they helped shape not only how I viewed the world, but also how I travel. Sure, it can be nice to travel in luxury every once in a while (after all, everyone deserves to feel like a princess once in a while), but its not necessary to always stay at a fancy hotel or travel via cruise ship. Staying in hostels gave me the possibility to meet new people, try new things (like a pub crawl for example), and see parts of the cities that one probably can't find in pamphlets. So here's to trying out new foods, meeting new people, and exploring different parts of the world that I could never imagine. You never know what might happen.
Until next time,