TL 14:Global Connections & Rites of Separation by Mazel Genfi London, England

Wow. I am finally leaving. It is honestly bittersweet at this point. London has truly been an emotional roller coaster. And, the crazy part my journey doesn’t even end there for me!  I am getting on plane and I probably will not be back here for a long time. I’m not going home just yet, I will be spending the next month in Ghana, West Africa.  I’ll miss the friends I made while being here and all of the great times we had together. I really can’t believe I am leaving. I have cherished all the moments that I have created here and in other parts of the world. I went from only knowing New York City to travelling to six different countries.   Slimbach states “if we allow, global learning will not only carry us into the world around us, but also the world within us.”(54). The way I view this quote is that travelling is such learning experience that it really changes how you view the world. I honestly believe that going abroad really help me find myself and I now have a better sense of who I am as a person. During my time abroad, I really went through a lot. A lot of smiles and a lot of tears. The broken laptop, the heartbreak, and the drama that went along with the travelling. These experience taught me how to react and how to approach different conflicts in life. I never really knew much about myself until I went abroad. I very much needed to change some of the habits that affected the relationships in my life. This journey allowed me to venture to new places and discover who I am. As stated by Slimbach, “The sudden vulnerability we experience as we arrive in an unknown place stripped of familiar surroundings, people, and routines renders us acutely aware of who we are, or at least of who we’re not”(54). Before coming to London, I honestly thought I had everything under control. I was so wrong. With everything that has happened to me, I have learned to be more independent and more mature with things in life. With this new outlook on life, I know how to be a better worldly person and be more grateful about the small things in life.

Preparing to leave has been weird.Everything to me has been “the last time I will do this” or “this is the last time I will do that”. I went to bible study the last time and the last ACS event for the last time. Everyone was so sad to see us leave. As much as they have impacted me and my friends, they have impacted us. We danced, laughed, and ate together for the last time. We prayed together for the last time and talked about the cultural differences for the last time.  This was my home for the last three months and these people were my family. As a result I’ve made a promise to myself that I will return to London again, making this good-bye a see you later instead. The part that sucks even more about this is that I don’t even get to go home yet, I will be settling and go through the phases I went through here in Ghana. So, it been a never ending cycle for me.

A quote that expresses my feelings about my study experience is “Our journey may be filled with much outward movement, but we are mostly traveling inside ourselves, to destinations never quite arrived at when we’re surrounded by sameness”(Slimbach, 55).This quote represent my journey and the trials and tribulations that I have been through. This trip has meant so much to me and has allowed me to develop and grow as a person.

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