Back in America

Katherine (Nina) Jones
May 30, 2014

It has been almost two weeks since I left Vienna, and I already miss it. In most ways, it has been shockingly easy to readjust to being back home. Before I left, I had anticipated a dramatic “reverse culture shock,” but it has not been the case. It almost feels like this semester didn’t event happen, but then I hear a song that reminds me of one of my friends from IES Abroad, or my U-Bahn card falls out of my wallet and I am reminded again of the incredible experience I had.

The things I miss about Vienna are mostly what I expected: I miss my daily routine, I miss complaining about the stairs in the IES Abroad building, I even miss hearing German all the time and being proud of myself when I could pick out a few words (it was usually the word for something super easy like “today” or “go”), and I miss being in the city.

I didn’t really expect to love Vienna as a city before I went. I had always heard about how beautiful and culturally rich it was, but I didn’t have a particular passion for it. But now, it certainly has a special place in my heart. I can’t put my finger on what exactly made it so special, though the public transportation system was for sure a plus, but I am pretty sure it is all of the memories I was lucky enough to make there. I had experiences both that I was ready for and that I hadn’t anticipated, I figured out how to get around and not look like a tourist all the time, and I met some of the most amazing people, with whom I shared some of the best times of my life in Vienna.

Even though I know that I will probably be back someday to visit, and I am going to see my friends in here in the USA, something about leaving Vienna felt so final. I will never be back as a student, traveling the cheapest possible way and staying in sometimes creepy hostels. I will never be back for such an extended period of time that I feel like I have a life there. And I will never be back with the same group again.

Although it  is very sad that the experience is over, I feel so lucky that I was able to participate. IES Abroad and Austria played excellent hosts, and I wouldn’t have done my semester abroad any other way.

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Katherine (Nina) Jones

<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);">Nina Jones is a junior at George Washington University studying International Affairs and History. In the future, she intends to pursue a career in either law or research. In addition to her interest in travel, Nina likes to read, play tennis, and listen to music. While in Vienna, Nina looks forward to taking advantage of the history, art, food, and language. She cannot wait to immerse herself in everything Vienna has to offer.</span></p>

2014 Spring
Home University:
George Washington University, The
International Relations
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