(Me holding Arthur’s Cat a few hours before driving to the airport)

Today, I officially embarked on the UMass Lowell Design Study Abroad trip to London. Not only is this my first time ever going to London, but it’s also the first time I’ve left the country. My family has flown out of the country many times, but I’ve always been bound to various responsibilities such as school, watching the dog, or lacking sufficient funds. With that said, I knew I had to seize this opportunity and finally break the bubble that I’ve had for the past 20 years. I knew this trip would not only be an enjoyable experience, but broaden my understanding of different cultures.
Every step of the process was not only new, but a huge learning experience. Being a pseudo-adult I was responsible for getting myself on this trip, not my parents. With that said, I learned a new level of independence in regards to filling out paperwork, saving enough money, and flying without family. As months of preparation past by, it was time to embark on this new journey.
In the past I have flown with my family many times, but this was the first without them. I thought this was going to be a way more difficult process but I was able to get to my gate in a quick and efficient manner. As I waited for everyone to arrive (I arrived at the airport first), my anticipation and excitement only heightened.The higher the plane rose, the heavier my eyes became. Still I couldn’t sleep because of my growing curiosity of what I’d expect in this new and different location.
We finally landed, the jet lag really kicked in. Because I’ve never left the country, I wasn’t use to being in an intensely different time-zone with more than a two hour difference. Being a design student however, I was no stranger to a lack of sleep. After trekking through customs and taking a cab I was finally in London. After months of prep I was finally embarking on my journey that I’ve been looking forward to. Even though, I’ve only been in London a brief time, the city is truly magnificent and grand  and I can’t wait to see what it can offer me in these next 10 days.