Before I left to study abroad in the Czech Republic, my neighbor told me I would come back a different person– he was right. After twelve weeks in Prague, I am finally state-side and have a completely new opinion of myself, and outlook on life. After being able to navigate a Czech-speaking country without relying on Google Maps, I realized that I am not as incompetent as I may have initially believed. Though there were some minor hiccups in my trip, (such as getting hit by a full grown man on a razor scooter and probably concussing myself) I feel that all in all, things went really well. To wrap things up, I’m going to share the highs and lows of my trip.
We’ll start with the lows:
- having bed bugs pretty much the entire 12 weeks
- 90-degree weather
- realizing that I actually kind of hate the subject I’ve been studying for the past two years
- gender discrimination in the work environment
And on to the highs:
- Watching my mom individually wipe down all the dollar bills in my wallet and lay them out to dry to prevent bed bugs from getting into our home, along with individual pens and everything that accompanied me on my trip.
- Every pair of shoes I own is currently enduring a 4-day deep freeze in my basement freezer.
- experiencing new locations and cultures (especially Greece)
- learning more about the field that I was originally planning on going into (and realizing I didn’t want to go into it)– this made both lists.
- testing my personal limits via new foods, jobs, and activities
- beginning a (so- far) successful freelancing career
- making new friends and lasting relationships
And that’s just to name a few…
The Czech Republic is a beautiful country which rich and intriguing history. I am so grateful for the experience to have learned about it through an internship, and not solely through tourism. I feel as though I would have missed out on a lot. For example, I would not have picked up a (small) bit of the language or formed Czech friendships and been exposed to their low-anxiety lifestyles. I would recommend a visit to the country to anyone who loves learning about post-communism life, stunning architecture, excellent dumplings and schnitzel, impressive original artworks, and appreciates unique cultures.