My time as a student abroad in London has come to an end. I was there for three and a half months, 110 days, 2640 hours, 158,400 minutes. It seems like I left Philadelphia yesterday, but arrived in the UK a lifetime ago.
Can I recap the past four months in this blog post? – No.
I will say, however, that my time spent in this fairytale, dream-world of a city was time well spent.
While everything I’ve written to date makes my experience sound like a glorified vacation, there were certainly struggles and periods of time where life wasn’t easy. That’s the thing with studying abroad though, it’s supposed to throw you out of your comfort zone, and forces you to adapt. Everything that you’ve had in your existence for twenty or so years is no longer with you. All your coping mechanisms for life are back where you left them, and that’s the beauty of it. A fresh start, to relearn who you are, and what you’re capable of.
The arduous process of undergoing dramatic changes in your life can seem overwhelming, but I was incredibly fortunate enough to meet, and become close with many people who I am forever thankful for. The friends I made, the laughs shared, and the places I went are my biggest takeaways from this whole experience.
Honestly, I wouldn’t have traded this for anything in the world. I was lucky enough to see and do some things I never saw myself doing. It changed me, and I like to believe that it changed me for the better. Time sort of slowed down for awhile. Things at home kept moving along like they have been, but across the ocean, life came, and went, in the blink of an eye.
I’m getting far too sentimental, so I’ll just say it was alright and leave it at that.
If there’s any advice I can give to anyone thinking about studying abroad:
DO IT, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, DO IT.
You won’t ever, ever regret it.
To end, a few thank yous are in order.
Thank you Camden Market, thank you Brighton, Brick Lane, Abbey Road, Tottenham, Shoreditch, Primrose Hill, Soho, the freaking tube, Hyde Park, her Royal Majesty, Westminster, the O2, my oyster card, the River Thames, the weekly outburst of fire alarms blaring at random hours, South Ken, Portobello Road, Heathrow, Café Nero, Burger King on Gloucester Road (don’t ask why), Dover, and every other possible thing. Thank you, London.
Most importantly, thank you to my flatmates: Brianna, Mitchell, Emma, Tom, Emily, Kiara, Victoria, Kim, Jhaqai, Morgan, Laura, Marissa, and last but not least, Mairead; Thanks for being you.
Home is where the heart is, but I left my heart back at 12 Manson Place, London SW7 5LT.