First Day, Travel Day

Well after 20 hours, 3 countries, 6 languages a nap and 2 planerides later, I’ve finally arrived in South Africa. It’s about 11pm now, and when we arrived at 9pm, the sun was down.  The city lights were the most captivating thing I’ve seen so far, and I can’t wake up tomorrow and every day for the next 30 days to see what adventures await me. 

When we first arrived in European airspace, we caught up with the sun which had risen just a few (seven) short hours ago, 2,000 miles away.  All I could think was, “we’re chasing the sun.” It was awesome, really, in a poetic and scientific way. 

Not much to report today, but the stop in Amsterdamn airport definitely got to me. It made me excited and upset at the same time.  I miss Europe, I miss traveling. I wish I could do it more, but yet again, I’ve always wanted a career that allows me to travel and see the world, and damnit I’m going to find one.  I never realized just how European I’ve always intrinsically been.  No wonder I don’t feel at home in America, everything from the way I dress, think and act seems distinctly European.  Call me a naive American, but I feel like I could blend in very well, especially in northern Europe/Netherlands.

Right now I’m just at the hotel making this entry. I’m in a queen sized bed that I have all to myself.  This truly is luxury.  I apologize for the short entry today. Again, not much happened and I’m staving off some jet lag; I feel like the three cups of coffee and nap helped a bit.  One thing I can say though is this:  jet lag won’t get to you if you don’t think about it.  I feel like the reason people get so tired is because they become mentally exhausted from trying to wrap their head around, “oh my gosh, it’s 2am back home and only 11pm here!” or whatever the differential is.  My advice to travelers is this: don’t think about the time difference. Just think about you’re in a new place and that’s all you need to know. Your mind and body will adjust accordingly. For the former, that takes a conscious effort.  New culture, people, languages and everything are conduscive to destryong any preconcieved notions or even stereotypes you may have had.  Travel truly does broaden your horizons (I’m sorry for the puns, most of them aren’t intentional) and makes you more aware of the people that live in the same earth as you that you may never meet.  I’m trying to be insightul, but it’s late and we have an early start tomorrow.  So until then, I hope to have more stories to tell and more lessons to learn.  And for studying abroad, I don’t think either will be in short order.

 

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