I literally just boarded the plane. It's large, and a bit more opulent than my more recent flights. I have a window seat on the left - next to a rather figgity man who seems to have 'flight phobia'. (My seat is 25A). I can hear British accents chattering all around me, as I did for the first time of the trip while waiting at Gate C19 for the last two hours. I can't believe this day is finally here!
My emotions have gone from stressed due to packing issues, incredibly sad and heart-wrenching to leave Tom, my parents, and friends -- to now pure excitement, anticipation, and fear of what's to happen next.
When I arrive, I expect to meet tons of new faces, see the beautiful city where I will be residing for the next four months, and learn all about the university, the people, culture, food, and overall differences in the way of life in the UK vs. US.
Although I am overcome by sadness every time I think about Tom and how hard it will be to be apart for so long, my goal in Europe remains the same. I want to embrace every moment, learn as much as possible, adapt to a culture completely unlike my own, and grow as a person.
I know the semester will fly by in the blink of an eye and I'll be back on a plane coming home for Christmas-time in Chicago before I know it -- so I plan to experience as much as possible and enjoy every opportunity overseas!