I am currently on a train on my way back from visiting a very good friend of mine. My friend Rose Lovett is studying abroad in London and invited me down to spend a day with her. I know for a fact this will be a day I will never forget. Not only did it go from rain and hail to sunny in a matter of 20 minutes, but I got to go back to a place that holds so many memories for me.
I visited the United Kingdom once before with my high school band when I was 17. We went to London for only about four hours. We spent all of our time at the Convent Gardens and watched various performers, made so many jokes and ate at a few cafés just to pass the time.
Today, I was on my way to a tour of London I had signed us up for, when Rose suggested to pop into some shops to grab some tea. It took me a few minutes, but I recognized where I was and all the memories came flooding back. This may be a bit sappy, but I began to get a bit teary eyed because I never thought I would ever return. I never thought I would have the opportunity to relive that day that was so short-lived.
I am currently studying abroad in York, England, and to be completely honest, it’s hard to sum up my time here so far. For the past few weeks, I have spent a majority of my time in York, but I’ve also been to Leeds and London. At this point, this city feels like home to me. I’ve learned things from, ‘Don’t walk around the city for four hours on an empty stomach,’ to, ‘Always fill day trips with fun things and flesh out those fun things so you’re not sitting in a McDonald’s for seven hours waiting for your train to go home.’
With these valuable life lessons, I’ve met some of the most amazing people. I’ve met a group of Spanish mixed with Mexicans, who have really brought me to fully come to understand my identity as an Afro-latina in today’s society. I have never spoken more Spanish in my life than I have here, of all places. It’s safe to say, I’m only a month and a half into this trip and I can feel that things are happening just the way they should be. I can’t wait to bring all the things I’ve learned and all of my stories back to Keene to share with everyone.
Lynne Carrion can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org