Tales from Abroad: A Summer in Europe Sep15


Related Posts

Share This

Tales from Abroad: A Summer in Europe

When people ask me to describe my month in Europe, I am consistently left at a loss for words. How do I succinctly describe a month in which I was challenged with new experiences, faced with big decisions, and out of my comfort zone every single day? It’s extremely difficult to summarize. In an ideal world, I would be able to tell everyone that asks me about my trip all that I can remember, down to the last detail. I’d tell them about the weekend that was supposed to be spent in Munich, but our Airbnb ended up being located deep in the stunning German countryside. Unaware of the distance and without much public transportation, we walked about 3 miles a day on average.

Though this could have been a miserable experience, the people that I was with made it one of the best weekends of my life by having adventurous hearts and positive attitudes. The town was incredibly small, so everywhere we went we saw a familiar face. Whether it was the bus driver who rescued us in our time of need, the sweet lady who sold us strawberries, or the owner of our Airbnb, there were friends everywhere we turned. I will forever be thankful for our mistake that allowed us to experience the German countryside in the most genuine manner possible.


I had many experiences like this, and with all the time in the world I would recount all of them in detail. I wish I could describe to my loved ones the immense beauty and historical depth within the Louvre, and how it felt to relax and read a book in front of the Eiffel Tower. I would attempt to explain how it felt to take a gondola ride in Venice, and the time that we took a journey to the top of a fortress in Salzburg, Austria, resulting in some of the most stunning pictures of my entire trip. I would depict the historical treasures located within our home base of Leipzig, such as the architecturally breathtaking church that Bach played at and the building where the German secret police, the Stasis, operated out of in East Germany during the Cold War. I would detail the experience of standing in front of the remains of the Berlin Wall, which symbolized the power and oppression of Communism in Eastern Germany. I know, without a doubt, that I would not be able to fully capture the experience of visiting Buchenwald, a former concentration camp. I left there in shock and deeply heartbroken.



My month abroad was, in a word, indescribable. Though I have been to Europe when I was younger, re-experiencing it as an adult allowed me to encounter many different cultures and worldviews at a meaningful level. Being amongst those who are so tremendously different than yourself is truly humbling. This experience made me a more cultured, open-minded person and further expanded my passion to learn about and love those who are unlike me. With an unlimited amount of time, I wish I could communicate all of these experiences and emotions in an effective manner. Though my travels may be difficult for me to summarize, I hope it triggers within you a desire to travel and compile a list of similar, indescribable experiences. If you are given the opportunity, I encourage you to do the same!