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It is hard to put into words the many changes I have gone through since the start of my semester in Madrid. I do feel that leaving the Amherst “bubble” has been good for my own personal growth. I was constantly challenged to adapt and step outside of my comfort zone. After two years at Amherst, I am guilty of falling into a predictable routine. The semester in Madrid gave me a chance to shake things up and live more …

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 …

From Rio to Chicago

“This is the last time I will be riding this boat in this direction for a while”, I think to myself as I take the ferry across to Niteroi one last time. Golden light seeps into the cabin, as the ocean gently rocks the craft. White collar workers doze off around me like babies in a cradle. Since making a good friend who studies at the Fluminense Federal University a couple months ago, I have gotten used to making this …