I feel that every single person should find some way to be able to visit another country and experience another culture. I know that for many it is not financially feasible, as it had previously been for me, but it was an invaluable experience. The things we were able to do and experience on this trip have truly changed my life and my world view. I had never before imagined myself living anywhere outside the US, but now I already have a 10 year plan of moving to Spain. Obviously not everyone will want to move to the country they visit, but it is still important to get out of your cocoon that is America and that is whatever state you’ve grown up in, and see that the world has so much more to offer. People live vastly different lives in some ways, and yet they go through the same things as us.
One of the biggest perks of traveling to Europe for me was that the experience does not have to end after the program ends. Since I was already in Europe, I took the opportunity to extend my stay and travel to London to be able to visit the rest of my mother’s family. I am truly blessed to be able to have that experience. They are memories I will never forget because I got to experience so much. The culture shock was insane. I grew up always seeing pictures and hearing things about these countries and it was truly life changing to be able to create my own experiences there.