During my time in the Galapagos Islands, I would jot down my experiences for the day in a journal every night. The next few posts will be some excerpts from my journal along with some pictures!
Day One — After a long day of traveling, delays and layovers, we finally made it to the Galapagos Islands! On the way from the airport, we stopped to see Los Gemelos, which are two twin craters on Santa Cruz Island.
Steve and I at Los Gemelos
We soon got to the hotel, settled down for a bit and had lunch. We then headed off to the Charles Darwin Research Center, which was walking distance from our hotel, and checked out some land iguanas and large tortoises.
Excerpt from journal — “In these past 24 hours, I’ve probably had about ~2 hours of sleep. Although now I’m exhausted, this whole day has been filled with such excitement. I’m getting to know all of my fellow classmates and I’ve been on such a high for the sole reason that it is my first time in South America. I’m extremely happy that I’m here and can’t wait to see what the rest of the week brings!”
Exactly a year ago today, I was embarking on a journey of a lifetime. For those of you who have followed this blog since day one, you’ve all been able to experience this journey with me. Barcelona is a city I fell in love with. I fell in love with the culture, the food, the people, the football culture — everything. I’ve been able to meet some amazing people that come from all walks of life around the world. Spring 2013 will always be close to me.
This past fall semester was viewed as a “transitioning” semester. I was transitioning back from an amazing spring semester and fun-filled summer. It was also my hardest semester. I was taking 18 credits and had a handful of jobs/internships to juggle. Throughout all of this, my experiences from abroad always came to mind at least once a day.
From taking the metro everywhere, speaking Spanish everyday and traveling to different cities frequently with all of my new friends to returning home and being thrown with a bunch of responsibilities — let me tell you, reverse culture shock does exist. My internship in Communications with the study abroad office (Center for International Education) has exposed me to a plethora of international students and a bunch of students who have recently studied abroad whom I could connect with about our experiences living and studying in a different country.
Although my study abroad journey may be over, it’s not something that I just left behind at the airport. The experiences and lessons I’ve learned are things that will stay with me forever. All of this has shaped me into the person I am today and have influenced my future and have made more of an impact on my every day decisions than I probably realize.
Tomorrow, I continue my travels to the Galapagos Islands where I will be taking a course called “Documenting Cultures.”
Chelsea Fagan, ”The 23 Hardest Things About Moving Home After Living Abroad”