Homesickness is a funny thing.
Whenever they talked about homesickness at study abroad orientations, it was usually referencing one’s home city and culture. Me, though, I’ve never been homesick for KC, Missouri or even my college city Tulsa, Oklahoma. If I compare London to any city I’ve been to in America, London wins in a landslide. If I’ve felt homesick for anything, it’s been the people I know and love from KC and Tulsa. So I can’t pretend I’m not excited to go home to see everyone again, especially with Christmas coming up.
It’s just unfortunate that the very next time I get to see my friends and family marks the end of my time in London (for now at least). It would’ve been really nice to see them briefly in the middle of the term. Even better, if they were over here with me, I’d have no desire to leave at all!
My flight’s on Sunday.
In a few short days, my adventure abroad will be done. This will be my last blog post in London.
And if I were to predict what I’d miss most about London, more than the free museums, the fish and chips, the festivals, the theatre, and the impressive sights, I think it’d also be the people I met and the friends I made.
Without even taking into account the things that I learned at Mountview, being in London (and not specifically London, but a completely different culture/city/country/environment) has taught me things I’d never find in any curriculum back home. I can’t speak for other schools, but mine has no classes in planning out-of-city weekend trips by yourself and what to do when things go horribly wrong. You can’t enroll in Feeding Yourself on a Limited Budget in an Expensive City 101. And it’s only out of the classroom that I learned (through several unanticipated instances) how to navigate my way through a strange city when hopelessly lost. If you had asked me months ago if I thought I could handle living in a big city after graduation, I’d probably hesitate and turn a little pale. But now I’d say, “After graduation? I’ve already done that!”
I’d also say that the most valuable lesson I’ve taken away from London is adopting the Carpe Diem mindset. I’ve never been described as an adventurous or spontaneous personality. Those who had done so more likely had mistaken me for somebody else. But with the lingering thought of “When will I get the chance to do this again?” sitting in the back of my mind, I’ve said “Yes” more often, tried more new things, and acted on the spur of the moment more often in the past three months than in the twenty-one years I’ve been alive. And I’ve regretted nothing. Except maybe packing too many clothes. My new favorite motto has become, “We regret the things we didn’t do more than the things we did do.”
And those are the best souvenirs to take home with you.
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<p><span style="color: rgb(29, 29, 29); font-family: Arial, Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal; background-color: rgb(237, 237, 237);">My name is Chase Wheaton-Werle. I'm a musical theatre major from the University of Tulsa. Outside of my major, I enjoy creative writing and poetry. In the fall of 2013 I'm attending Mountview Academy for the Theatre Arts. This will be my first experience out of the country, and as someone with a passion for theatre and British culture, I couldn't ask for a better destination. I hope this blog can provide not only some insight to the intensive curriculum of an actor in the theatre center of the world, but also some good chuckles.</span></p>