Home Sweet Home 

I’ll admit it. Leaving Europe was hard. I may have even stayed a few extra weeks following the old motto ‘treat. yo. self’ much to my mother’s dismay and ultimate horror!

I loved so much of the culture I saw in Europe that I am bombarding my household and daily routine with it!

  1. I plan to read classic novels at the park. I found that when the weather was nice, people congregated at the park, laid down on the grass and read.
  1. I found that almost everyone I met in Europe spoke at least one other language, so I am now watching French cartoons, reading Harry Potter in French, watching French films, studying my French textbook, and learning from an app called Duolingo.
  1. I am actually eating Muesli for breakfast like I did nearly every morning in Berlin.

  1. And the most aggressively despised change I have instilled (title given by my mother): I have an international table in my house called the ‘International Zone’ where all the newspapers, magazines and books I bought while abroad are placed.

Things I enjoy most about being home:

  1. I celebrate every time I don’t have to pay for the public restroom!
  1. I am pleasantly pleased every time I order water without having to specify that yes I do indeed want the non-fizzy, non-sparkling, non-mineral, non-classic water, thank you very much! I cannot express how much money I wasted accidentally buying a bottle of the wrong water, opening it and tasting that horrible water with gas!
  1. My car! It’s simply so convenient! Yes, the public transportation was nice and environmentally-friendly, but it was not 2 suitcases and 3 backpacks friendly! Okay, I bought a lot of souvenirs. I don’t regret a thing.
  1. The convenience of having a refrigerator, oven and microwave. Never have I ever been so grateful as I am after Europe for the simple luxuries many of us overlook in our hectic lives. I love knowing that I have food I love just a few rooms away. I also like knowing which restaurants serve what without having to guess what I will like.
  1. No schedule! Well, at least for now!
  1. Hot weather! In Europe, some days were so cold that one jacket was simply not enough! I quite enjoy my shorts and tank tops.
  1. Air conditioning. Opening the window every night was problematic because at first, the temperature in the room would be too hot but by the morning, I would be freezing. But the room would be so stuffy without the windows open.
  1. Less sausage and meat! I like my homemade soup.

Honestly, I expected Europe to change me. But not this much! In the weeks since I have returned to Florida, I have felt completely different than when I left. I feel a stronger sense of self and purpose in life. I am more decisive and straightforward. I am more motivated and persistent with my goals than ever before. I have a million and one ideas bouncing all around my head and I used to be unable to decide what I wanted to pursue. I would become passionate about one idea and go at it full force, then change to another when my next big idea came around- in usually less than a week, tops! I just have such a zest for life that I want to experience every aspect of it. But now, I know how to utilize my assets to my advantage and even use my seemingly negative qualities to my benefit as well. I decided that in addition to my English major, I will pursue French and study abroad in France. I now know how to motivate myself and I no longer rely on anyone else to get me to do things. I have become extremely determined to turn my aspirations into a reality.

Stay tuned for my blog from France!



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