Right now, I am packing my bags once again, only now I am preparing to head back home tomorrow. I find myself feeling a lot of different emotions right now. I am excited to be home again, but I will also miss Britain very much. These past few months have been the best of my life, and I have made a lot of amazing memories here.
It is difficult to say goodbye to the friends I have made over here. They have made the experience even better, and it is difficult to not know when we will see each other again.
Thinking back to my time in London already feels like such a different time, even though it was just a couple months ago. And thinking about when I first got on a plane to come here feels like a lifetime ago.
In my first post, I said that I would likely return a different person than when I left, and I think that was an accurate prediction. I will have to see how much I have changed as I readjust to being home.
When I was preparing to study abroad, I was told about the “reverse culture shock” I might experience when I return home. At first, I did not believe that would happen to me, but now I am wondering what I will experience in that readjustment period.
After all, I have spent the last three months in a different country with different people. While I have not been speaking a different language, there were still a lot of changes I experienced here, and it will be interesting to see how much of a shock it will be to have another big change.
Right now, what I am feeling most of all is gratitude for the experience I have had. Thanks to this experience, my bucket list has gotten quite a bit shorter. Places like London and Paris were places I was always hoping to see, and now I have gotten to visit both while I am still in college.
Thanks to this trip, I now feel like a far more experienced traveler. My confidence in navigating trips big and small has grown considerably, and I also feel like a more seasoned citizen of the world.
For myself, I feel fulfilled when I go to the places I have always wanted to see. Europe was always a dream destination of mine, and now I get to say I have seen some of it for myself.
And beyond the travel, I also feel like a more evolved student. I have written about as many papers in the last three months than I did in my previous two years at college, and I feel much more efficient when it comes to research. Since I would like to pursue a career in academia, I know the lessons I have learned here will be invaluable as I push on into the future.
When I return home, I am looking forward to having time to relax. After so much planning and thinking about the little details of each day, I am looking forward to having no schedule for a little while.
When I write my post-trip post soon, I will be curious how my perspective will have changed over the next few days. One thing I know I for certain is that no matter how much time has passed, this has been the trip of a lifetime.
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My name is Brady Judd. I am from Mill Creek, Washington, and I am a third-year history major at Whitworth University. As a history nerd, I am incredibly excited to be traveling to the UK. I have also long been a fan of British culture, watching shows like "Top Gear" and "Sherlock" as I grew up. I am an avid learner, so I can't wait to share all of the things I will be discovering with you.