This trip so far has been a dream come true for me on so many different levels. What first attracted me to this course was the mention of being able to go around England (which I have ALWAYS wanted to do), seeing where prominent structures, events, and humans lived and existed, the mediedval time era we would be studying, and the actual history involved that we would be learning along the way. For at least the past six years, I have read fictional and nonfiction stories about royalty and aristocrats that were based in England, and from the first book I read, I have always wanted to see the places I read about. Now, fortunately and gratefully, I have been able to see these places, experience them, and watch them come to life right before my eyes.
The experiences I have had throughout this journey have been absolutely amazing, despite the rocky befginning it was for most of my group and the struggles we have had amongst ourselves, locations, and against, time. Trying a new kind of tea while having tea with three other female members of the group at the Jane Austen museum in Bath. Walking up towers in St. Andrews, York, Bath, Salisbury, and maybe more and other places. Trying Nepalese food in Bath. Walking where Mary Queen of Scots lived for the brief time she was actually in Scotland and seeing where her son was born. Seeing the Scottish crown jewels. Having cappacino at the palace in Edinburgh and hot chocolate in front of the art gallery in York. Going to the Dr. Who experience and having another layer of my nerdiness be revealed to myself. Going to pubs with members of the group in Oban and having dinner with some in Conwy. Dancing with the locals of Iona. Attending evensong in Gloucester. Having an evening at the thermal spa in Bath. Exploring numerous castles and church structures. Attend two Scotch whisky tastings (Oban and Edinburgh). Going to the Museum of London. Seeing various spots where the Harry Potter movies were filmed. And so the list goes on and on.
Another way this trip has been pretty awesome for me is how I have been able to open up to the other students about how I am and some things I have gone through in the past. This is huge for me because I am a quiet, introverted person to the point it should be a crime. Especially around people I do not know that well or I feel uncomfortable around. However, despite my introverted nature, I feel I have been able to socialize, communicate, connect with, and relate to many people in the group within the first two weeks of the trip (a personal best for me, honestly). I am personally very proud of myself for coming out of my shell to feel comfortable enough to tell people I have only known by name (if I knew of them at all) very personal information. That doesn’t happen in such a short amount of time for me. Ever.