Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Mind the Memory Gaps

I spent two hours reading a college journal the other day. I didn't do this because I was feeling nostalgic or wanted a reminder of how dramatic I could be (seriously?!) I read it because I wanted to be taken back to a particular time -- a semester I spent studying abroad in London. I remembered the major things, of course, but I knew my journal would have all of the details I might have forgotten. As it turned out, it also had play tickets, pictures, and terrible poetry (ugh).

My friend, Taryn founded a summer travel program for high school and college students interested in traveling to Ireland called the Irish Life Experience. It's an amazing opportunity for young people and Taryn asked me write something for their blog sharing what I gained from traveling at that age. I wasn't sure where to start!

It was the first time I'd traveled that far from home alone and my first experience abroad. It was... incredible. I saw history in a new and exciting light, met truly wonderful people I still call friends, and left with a special place in my heart for London. Everything about it still makes me smile and I loved re-reading all of the experiences I had while I was there.

Interestingly, the things I wanted to write about were the things I already remembered vividly even without opening my journal. The people I spent time with in London shaped my experiences there and made it the great semester that it was. I'm thankful for all of you.

I think all students should study abroad. I've returned to Europe a few times since college, but it's an entirely different experience at that age. I was thrilled when my brother decided to go to Australia for a term and am positive I'll encourage Emily to travel at some point while she's in college.

College! Can you imagine!? At some point this little girl is going to go away to college! This is so surreal to me. I was thinking this while changing her diaper today. She looked up at me and said, "Mommy, poop is brown and pee is yellow." Yup. College-bound. Just not quite yet.

Thank you, Taryn, for letting me relive my study abroad experience by writing about it! It was a fun way to spend an afternoon and a great escape from my usual psych testing, toddler tunes, and diapers. For anyone who may be interested, my guest post is called Trip of a Lifetime. Cheers!

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