Caught In The Middle

Don’t worry! I have not forgotten about you! It has been quite a busy month, between spring break and midterms my life won’t seem to slow down. And I mean that in a good way! I am trying to fit in as many experiences as possible before my time here is up!

Spring break was amazing. I started my adventure in Paris, France and ended in Granada, Spain. Two completely differently experiences but equally unforgettable. Paris was everything everyone said it would be and more! I would have to say that the Eiffel Tower was my favorite tourist attraction in Paris, as cliché as that sounds. You wonder how a hunk of metal can be so beautiful but believe me, there is no better sight! The food in Paris was to die for! It makes me wish that I didn’t have champagne taste on a beer budget! But I was still able to try their famous cheese, bread, escargot, French onion soup, and my favorite- a Nutella and banana crepe!  All of which where fantastic! I crave a crepe everyday now! I guess it gives me an excuse to go back!

Eiffel Tower at night! How could you not love this?! I can see why they call Paris the city of love....

Granada was a whole different experience. My favorite part was seeing a familiar face! I had the opportunity to see one of my very best friends from Austin College and see what her study abroad experience is like staying with a local family. Her house mom made us lunch and dinner! That was one of my favorite parts, a true home cooked meal! I hadn’t realized how much I missed a home cooked meal until visiting Granada. It was also nice being surrounded by a language that seemed somewhat normal. I could at least respond and understand Spanish. Whereas Paris, I was clueless.

Spanish! A familiar sight and familiar food! Delicious restaurant!

On a sadder note, its official, I only have one month left in beautiful Europe. My emotions are caught in between excitement and sadness. This semester seems to have flown by, but looking back at my very first day in Prague it seems like forever ago. I have absolutely no regrets and I feel that I have taken full advantage of this experience. I have grown more as a person and have really realized how important traveling is to me. When I get asked the question, what do you want to do after you graduate? I actually have an answer: travel. I didn’t know this about myself before this semester and I hope it rubs off on my friends so we can travel together in the future!

Words cannot express how amazing studying abroad has been. I have learned so much about myself through this process and have met so many great people. And I would like to think I have made life long friends. I, of course, miss home and all my old friends and family and I am excited to see what life is going to bring me once I get back to the States. However, a part of me will always be in Prague. It has become more than just an apartment, but a home, filled with amazing sites, food, friends, and new experiences every day.  We have gone from below freezing temperatures to sixty degrees and sunny. I have had the opportunity to travel all the way from Dublin to Poland. There is no better way to learn about yourself and the world than through travel. I encourage every single one of you to save up some money, sell your car if you have to, and travel! There is nothing like hopping from hostel-to-hostel, city-to-city, and country-to-country. You get the opportunity to meet people from all around the world and exchange your life stories. You learn new possible adventures, goals and dreams throughout your travel.

At the end of my studying abroad experience I will have seen 9 countries in 3 months! I feel like that is quite an accomplishment. And this is one of the main reasons why Prague, and more specifically the Czech Republic, is an amazing place to study; it is so close to other countries. It makes traveling so much easier and less expensive. Prague is and will forever and always be my favorite city in the whole world!

The view of Prague from the Zizkov neighborhood (my neck of the woods)

Alyssa Fidel
Classmates Connecting Cultures
Prague, Czech Republic
Spring 2012

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