Daily Life

I spent the last week getting over a cold, which meant lots of sleeping during the day and and some time spent at the chemist finding cold medicine in a whole new world of over-the-counter drugs.  I felt better on Sunday and took a ferry around Darling Harbour.  In Sydney, public transport costs $2.60 total on Sundays, so it’s a great day to explore.  Here is my photo of the Sydney Harbour Bridge (you can see the Opera House, too). …

Intro: Economic and Ecological Sustainability in Bhutan

Landing in Bhutan, a country with one airport and the Buddhist spirit of interconnectedness weaved throughout, I felt the cool air try to penetrate my nose, my ears, my mouth. I took one deep breath in and closed my eyes for a second. It was coming, the inexplicable twitching of my eyes every time I step into a place I’ve never seen before. The Himalayas loomed over me, us, and in the midst of Oohs and Aahs escaping my lips, …

Intro: Mülltrennung, Waste and Recycling System in Germany

Hello! I’m Bixie Eutsler, a third year Amherst student! I’m majoring in SWAGS and German, but I’m interested in a wide variety of topics including film and environmental protection. I am spending this school year abroad at Göttingen University in Germany. Amherst has a very interesting partnership with Göttingen in which every year two to four Amherst students study here. In return, two or more Göttingen students come to Amherst and act as our German language assistants. They also run …

First Impressions

It’s 75 degrees and sunny here in Sydney. March 1st was the first day of Autumn and I spent the afternoon at Bondi Beach avoiding surfers who strayed into the designated swimming section. I arrived two and a half weeks ago. What follows requires a bit of terminology: Uni: University, i.e. where one studies. Here, the University of Sydney, which is located in Camperdown, a suburb in Sydney’s Inner West. Photos of the quadrangle and parts of the law school …

Intro: Food Sustainability in the Arctic

2/15/2019 Hi! I’m Olivia, Class of ‘20 and I’m a Geology major from Bend, Oregon. This semester I’m studying at the University Centre in Svalbard (UNIS) on the Norwegian archipelago of Svalbard, which is about halfway between mainland Norway and the North Pole. UNIS is focused exclusively on Arctic studies, and by definition the school cannot teach any courses that are taught on mainland Norway. This basically means that all of the courses incorporate a ton of field work, which …

Expectations and First Impressions

I would like to say that I arrived in Spain without fully-formed expectations, but that would not be entirely honest. Before arriving in Madrid I spent hours imagining what it would be like to walk down picturesque streets (such as the ones pictured below) and to eat traditional Spanish dishes like croquetas and paella. Once I decided to spend a semester in Spain, I began to feel a hunger: the need to make a checklist of “must-have” experiences that if …

Now What?? A Few Things I Learned While Abroad and What Happens Next

Hi everyone! I’ve been back home in the US for about two weeks now. I will admit that I did have a bit of reverse culture shock when I first came back. Instead of cobblestone streets and my yellow bike, I was back to driving my van in the suburbs. Instead of my favorite Danish coffee shop and pastries, I was back in my favorite pizza place because, after all, nothing beats New York pizza. I was reunited with a …

Final Blog

I did not prepare myself for my return home especially the emotions I am experiencing now. I had to say goodbye to my life of travels, to the friends I made, to the city I had come to appreciate and love. I sit at home now watching Netflix or occasionally going out to see my friends and family. When I am asked about my travels abroad, I get excited and nostalgic and then frustrated when I do not see the …

My Identities Abroad

Now that my time is ending in Spain, I thought I would share some of my thoughts about my various identities and traveling abroad in Spain and other countries in Europe. I will discuss my black, American, and New York City identities in hope to show how each one shifts my power and privilege in different contexts. Let’s start with my black identity. I must admit that it was difficult to be black in Europe. I remember the first week …

The Balance

  I said it in my first post, but this city really becomes something else at night. This might be my own biases coming out though. Some of my favorite memories from Shanghai will be associated with its nighttime, and the people I met while exploring the streets. That’s one of the most important parts of my experience, now that I’ve had some time to reflect on it. The people are what kept me so interested and curious about the …

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