This is not goodbye, but kind of

Hey all!  It’s been a while!

I recently got coffee with a friend from the trip and, while we see each other all the time for class and various social activities, this particular meeting resulted in a lot of reminiscing and reflecting.  On Sunday, our entire cohort got together for dinner at our professor’s house, which provided another great opportunity for sharing memories and stories, some of which had been forgotten or overlooked due to the more prominent events that happened during the trip.

We were reminded of great times and funny events, sticky situations we got ourselves into, and then out of again.  One thing I will never understand about this group of people is why every time they gather together they feel the need to remind us of (if in some bizarre world we could possibly have forgotten) the time that Eli and I got deathly sick and had to be rushed to the emergency room in Morocco.  It always comes up when people are laughing and telling stories and someone’s like,

“Oh yeah, haha remember when you all had to go to the hospital cause you were on the verge of death and everyone else was running around in chaos cause no one knew what was going on and then we had to literally drag you through the airport with all your luggage cause you were too weak to even stand?  Haha, good times.”

No.

Everyone thinks it’s something that should be brought up because it’s one of those terrible stories that after a certain period of time has passed everyone thinks it somehow transforms from horribly disastrous to hilarious.  I am not one of those people.

Despite the unwelcomed reminders, being given the time to reunite in a non-academic environment has proven to be very important.  It gives us a chance to decompress once again and revisit all of the wonderful experiences we had.  So much happened to us while we were abroad.  So many good things, opportunities, to grow, to learn, to meet amazing people, and to try things so drastically different from life here in the US.  Things that unless experienced first-hand, very often cannot be conveyed using words and thus not understood by those who did not participate.  So much happened, and so much has yet to be told.

One of my roommates recently told me she hadn’t showered in a day or two.  I proceeded to assure her that I will never, ever judge her, or anyone, for not showering.  It brought me back to the time we worked for two days in a village hauling sand and water, cementing floors, digging holes, and spinning kids around in circles.  Drenched in sweat and coated in dirt for two straight days, after having traveled halfway across the country on a cramped bus.  After getting heat rash.  After living off of bananas and lentil soup.  After who knows what.  By the time we finally got to get clean, it was in a river.  That’s awesome and unique and wonderful.

I was, we all were, so incredibly happy.  Coming back together for class is one thing, but hanging out for a few hours just because is entirely different, and so much better.  It was a bittersweet moment for sure, as we relieved the good ole’ glory days, while simultaneously realizing that our year together is coming to a close.  Some of us will still see each other occasionally, and fortunately a few of us are taking another class together next semester.  The majority of us, however, are going to go our separate ways.  We will always share the memories and experiences of a wonderful year together, with one incredibly amazing month packed in there, but we are going to move on to even more incredible things.

I might post on here occasionally when I’m feeling nostalgic and think up another story to tell or share some pictures, cause there are many!  At the same time, I’ve got plans to leave again within the next few months.  And I can promise you that’s not the last time.  So stick around if you want to join in my future adventures.  Thanks for reading!

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Our last night together in Sri Lanka, saying goodbye
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Our last night together in Sri Lanka
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Spending our last nights together hanging out at the beach

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