Thursday, 22 May 2008

Soon to Be an Ex-Ex-Patriot

It's hard to believe that exactly four months ago, I was anticipating my trip to Cairo. It's even harder to believe that less than a year ago I was anxiously awaiting the beginning of a year in Scotland. Now, I'm approaching my last final exam here and my next adventure.

Lately it seems that the general preponderance is the uncertainty of what waits ahead. There are the usual anxieties of starting another year or a new job or moving to a new place. But what is stranger is to return to a place, a very familiar place, knowing it will not be the same. In my Scottish literature class, we read several short stories that dealt with Scottish ex-patriots returning home and what they found on arrival. Now, I'm neither Scottish nor from some tiny island village nor have I been gone for thirty years, but I think the sentiments and underlying emotion are similar. There are times that I feel that I have to glorify everything here. I must be the Roman returning victorious from battle and I am not sure I can always keep that charade up. Not to say that there haven't been many wonderful experiences, but they have been fully tempered by the difficulties.

There are so many myths and expectations of studying abroad. This year has been the strangest, loneliest, most adventurous year yet. And for all of that, I wouldn't take it back. However, as the Chart of Emotions that one of my friends was given (in the conclusion that a visual bell graph would help explain what to expect while studying abroad), I am now approaching the reverse effects of studying abroad. What are those? Tune in next fall.

I think I might delaying travelling for 2 or 3 days and enjoy some more time in the company of people here. Not that I have money to waste, but the extra expense of changing a plane ticket seems well worth it at the moment. Then I'm off to Italy for about two weeks and then a quick jaunt to the isles of Ireland and Britain before I sail home.

Strange how the time flies in a foreign country, even when every moment isn't necessarily fun...

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