It’s the middle of August, and I am ready to go back to Georgetown.
In my absentminded daydreams, I draw up packing lists, plan out my dorm room decorations, reminisce about warm September days in Washington – watching the leaves turn fire colors; feeling motivated by the boundless energy on campus at the start of the year; looking up at Healy clock tower as the sun sets and feeling at home in the world.
This fall semester, however, will be markedly different from the last two. This August, I am leaving behind, temporarily, everything I have built for myself at Georgetown over the past few years. In two weeks, I am getting on a plane to Ireland, ready (hopefully) for a semester abroad at Trinity College Dublin.
To tell you that I am not afraid would be dishonest. In many ways, I feel like a freshman all over again. Yet, I am excited, eager for the new friends, new ideas, and new experiences I hope to find in Dublin. As an International Politics major, I’m looking forward to studying European politics, and especially Irish politics, as the EU faces a major crossroads given the Brexit vote this past June. As an English nerd, I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to live in a UNESCO City of Literature for four months. I’m also excited to use my semester abroad as a chance to connect with my Irish roots, to visit my cousins, and to both immerse myself in modern Irish culture and deepen my appreciation for traditional Irish music and arts.
They say your study abroad experience is supposed to help you discover a different side of yourself. And so, with this in mind, I am embracing this semester as an opportunity to take a step back mid-way through my college career and gain some perspective.
My aim in writing this blog is to chronicle that experience. And this, I suppose, is how it begins: with a late night post, written with trepidation in my heart and a restlessness in my shoes.