Ireland in the fall

The summer lull before fall semester study abroad is…  

Kilcoe Castle, home of Jeremy Irons.

Kilcoe Castle, home of Jeremy Irons.Apprehensive. 

Stressful, terrifying, apprehensive, suspenseful, exciting, heavy, slow, quick. It tugs at both my heartstrings and my patience. 

For the past three weeks, I’ve been simultaneously nagging my dad to buy plane tickets and struggling over my return date from Ireland. Will I be itching for home after three months? Or will a few extra days allow me to squeeze in some last minute adventures.

From the application process to the pre-departure packing stage, study aboard is, first and foremost, an experiment in planning. I go to school an hour and a half away from where I grew up; packing my life away into a manageable suitcase is not my forte.

But I’m deeply thankful the for opportunity. The lessons I’m learning have started even before I leave American soil. Be it finding affordable travel options, saving up money, resolving housing issues in both the U.S. and Ireland or simply navigating the study abroad bureaucracy, these skills will be as applicable to me later in life as anything I learn while in Europe.

I am blessed to have a chance to live abroad, for however long – and however stressful – it is.

And now, to rekindle my fevered feeling of travel anticipation, a collection of photos from my spring break trip to Ireland …

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