I’ve lived in Dublin for over a month, and of course I celebrate by leaving the country. Three nights in Brussels, Belgium, spent exploring the city and surrounding areas. We made nightly trips to the Grand Place for pseudo-picnics, surrounded by gold and individually crafted statues older than my own country. As beautiful as it was, coming home to my apartment was such a relief.
It’s incredible how much I’ve settled from home to home. Five months ago it was a studio apartment in southeast Connecticut and I’m still working out where I’ll be in another five. It doesn’t take much more than a couple weeks of living somewhere to feel a connection. It’s easy to forget that I’m in Ireland, I still go to classes, speak English, and every other task I’d do at RIT. Then again, everything is also so different. New apartment, new roommates, new social circles.
I know I’ve grown. I’ve always been social, but the courage of being the new student in upper level classes is new. Honestly, it’s tiring, figuring out which societies or clubs to join, finding group members for projects, etc. It’s stunning though, because I feel myself constantly pushing to try. That’s really what this all is, trying in whatever form it takes to make the most out of this experience. If I was simply going to classes as normal and spending the rest of the time in my apartment, would I even be experiencing everything going abroad has to offer me? Knowing this, nothing feels more satisfying than thinking over the accomplishments of the day, wondering what’s next, and falling asleep in my own bed.