Travel Log 2 “Rites of Separation: Looking Behind and Looking Ahead: Expecting and Accepting the Unexpected” by Bryan Riemer. Andover, MA

I did not realize how soon my departure was until I shared my separation letter with my parents. The summer going into my Junior year of high school I spent a month in Israel on a teen tour and the separation from my parents was extremely difficult to deal with. I was not prepared at all and went in with a terrified attitude. That experience made me realize how much more I could have learned, and enjoyed if I was not so home sick. This separation letter has helped me cope with the separation and feel more prepared for the separation which is just 3 days away. When I was brainstorming for my separation letter my mind was racing a mile a minute thinking about everything that could happen when the separation time actually arrives. I have always had a difficult time with separation and I think that is mainly because I was not prepared. The only thing that may hold me back from full separation is social media. I am fully prepared to talk to my friends and family while abroad but I am not certain how I will react to the situation until it arises.

I imagine that a successful education abroad experience will involve me immersing myself into the Irish culture and be up for any opportunity. I will also need to keep myself active and entertained during the down time so I do not think about home and what others are doing. An unsuccessful education abroad experience would be a situation in which I survive it but that is all. I would be so home sick that I would not do well in my classes and not engage in activities with others. Although that sounds awful I can guarantee that it will not happen and that I will have a very successful education abroad experience.

The unexpected is always scary but I will be going to Ireland with a positive, yes man attitude. I am always expecting the unexpected and I going to try my best to accept it with a smile. This experience only comes once in a lifetime and I need to make it a very successful one both educationally and socially. I was trying to find a quote that will capture what I am looking to accomplish during my time abroad and it just so happened that the perfect one was part of workshop 2. The quote reads, “life isn’t about finding yourself, life is about creating yourself” (Bernard Shaw). I find that this describes the abroad experience extremely well because it is saying that if you want to improve yourself you have to go out and do something about it, instead of sitting around and waiting for it to happen. I also think that this quote is saying that you should go into everything with an open mind and if there is no reason to say no, say yes.

The picture I chose that best portrays my ABCs is a picture I took a couple days ago at lake Winnipesaukee. It is a picture of the sky after the sun has already set. Although you ca20505_10200625462475187_7059107558938027339_nn no longer see the sun you can still the the beauty it leaves behind, and you know that you will see it again shortly. This photo is exactly like my separation from home because I will be away from my friends and family but  know that they will be there when I return. My thoughts about all of this will be like the picture as well, because when I could no longer see the sun I was not upset, I was embracing the beauty of what it left behind. I will always enjoy the sunset but when the time comes to see it go I am going to accept what comes next.


3 thoughts on “Travel Log 2 “Rites of Separation: Looking Behind and Looking Ahead: Expecting and Accepting the Unexpected” by Bryan Riemer. Andover, MA

  1. I agree, leaving America is going to be pretty tough considering it’s all most of us have ever known. To try to help with this adjustment I planned with my parents to have little contact the first week or so. I think this will definitely help me adjust to Irish culture because I won’t be bogged down by things going on at home. I also have planned to limit myself on social media the first week or two to also not preoccupy myself with America and make me miss it more. Maybe you could try something like this too to help with the adjustment.


  2. I really liked the quote that you included in your blog. I think that is really resonates with a life situation like going abroad. Most people say that they may want to go abroad to “find themselves”, but I what really happens is that the abroad experience that will create who we are without even knowing it. I agree that this going to be big change, but I also want to have a positive attitude and try to just soak in every moment!


  3. Bryan, I love the picture you took and how you related it to the study abroad journey. I completely agree with what you said and it also had me thinking about how lucky I am to have such a great support system at home that I do have through my parents and my older sister. I also am lucky because my sister is studying abroad in Belize so I will have her to compare study abroad experiences with and even though she is not with me and cannot be seen, we will become even closer through our mutual experiences and challenges we are both sure to face. I think that your attitude to embrace beauty even when it is not so obviously in front of you is going to help you strive through all challenges because it is a very strong and powerful mindset.


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