This month has been the fastest, longest, most amazing month of my life. Studying abroad in Paris has given me so opportunities, experiences and friendships that will last a lifetime.

Looking back over this past month, there are so many cool things that I’ve been able to do. I remember the very first day that we got here when I saw Paris for the first time and couldn’t believe that I would be living there for a whole month. I immediately fell in love with the beauty of the hotel that we would be calling our home for the next month.

Now, a month later, Paris feels like it is my home. As a group, we’ve learned how to live and thrive in this city, and there were times when we even felt like locals after getting accustomed to life here. We found our way around, discovered our favorite restaurants, and explored streets off the beaten path. We also, of course, acted like tourists and never stopped admiring every piece of this city.

The hotel that we stayed at truly became a second home for all of us. After a few weeks of living here, we made some friends with the hotel staff and it was always great to be greeted by a familiar face whenever we arrived at or left the hotel. A month ago I would have never thought that I would miss the hotel staff!

I’ve also loved having all of my closest friends just steps away. My roommate and I had met each other before coming here, but this past month together has turned us into best friends. There was never a time that either one of us would leave the room without the other, and we always had a sure breakfast, lunch, and dinner date!

It was also great to be able to walk down the hall at our hotel to see all my other friends. It was so easy to make plans for dinner and sight seeing with everyone always in the same place. It was also super convenient for group projects since we could all just meet in one person’s room without even leaving the hotel. I’ve loved that we’ve all been so close together because we run into each other all the time, whether just around our hotel or on the streets in our area of Paris.

I think the hardest thing about leaving is going to be the little things. We’ve gotten so used to our daily routines in Paris, so going back home to the U.S. is going to feel completely different. We’re no longer going to have breakfast waiting for us downstairs when we wake up, or private cars waiting to take us to class. We won’t see the Eiffel Tower every day, and we won’t have beautiful museums and churches surrounding us on every corner. Not to mention all of the beautiful cafes lining the streets – I will definitely miss the leisurely paced lunches and dinners!

I don’t think I could ever be ready to leave Paris. I’m excited to see my friends and family and tell them all about my adventures, but a part of my heart will always still be in Paris. I know that I will be back one day, but until then, au revoir Paris, je t’aime !