Traveling Abroad and / or Broadly Traveling

As mentioned in my last blog, last weekend I was able to take a quick day trip up to Northern Ireland. We crossed rope bridges, walked on volcanic rocks (or rocks placed by a giant!), skirted through the Dark Hedges, and strolled around Belfast. I realized though, on my travels last weekend, that Northern Ireland was the fifth country I had visited in my lifetime. Five seems like such a large number, especially when most of my family has lived and traveled in America, with an occasional jaunt to Canada. Five is also so vastly small, when you consider that there are 195 countries in the world; which means that I have only covered 2.6%!

Before Ireland, I visited Honduras in 2014 for a mission trip, and Canada, most recently in October of 2017 to go to Niagara Falls. Two vastly different sets of activities, from visiting orphanages to getting splashed by waterfalls. Do I think that my international travel prepared me well for living in another country for three months? Debatable. I knew a bit about Irish culture (mostly the stereotypes, sorry!!) and I knew absolutely nothing about what it was like to work in Ireland. Knowing that I wanted to do an international internship and looking at the five that I was qualified to apply for (unfortunately Spain and France were ruled out due to their respective language requirements), Ireland just stood out to me. I don’t have a specific reason to have come here; I have no family here, no lineage (that I know of), and no big plans. Something about Ireland just seemed right to me. And despite sounding like a fledgling YA novelist, everything that I’ve experienced so far has proven to myself that I chose correctly. Hopefully my gut feeling continues to prove correct. More to come.