Whether it may be intellectual or land, we must be willing to explore new terrain.
Roma. O, Roma. La Città Eterna. The zest of this city made me feel so full. In fact, Italy was by far my favorite European country out of the eight I visited. From Venice -> Cinque Terre-> Florence -> Tuscany ->Amalfi Coast-> down to Sicily… Italy is simply a dream. The language, scenery, cuisine, literally EVERYTHING was as if I was living in a postcard. It has almost been two years since my travels abroad and I’ve never felt more nostalgic.
Once we arrived, culture shock hit us like a ton of bricks. But as time passed, I finally felt at ease. I would notice how much more welcoming the locals were with me as my time there proceeded. On my walks to school (4 miles altogether), I would develop rapport with the local market/cafe/restaurant owners. Closer to the end of my experience, I was greeted by name, a few times a day by these individuals. This by far was the most satisfying feeling. I felt as if I was not just considered another turisti Americani but instead recognized as if I were a local. I tried to immerse myself in the culture, the best I could… so this was everything to me. I actually envisioned myself one day settling down in Rome, as I wholeheartedly fell in love with the culture. There were days I would walk past the Roman Forum or Colosseum and feel as if I was transported back in time but then I’d blink and feel the whiff of air zooming past as nuns made way on their Vespas.
Lately, I’ve been finding my days very monotonous, daydreaming at work, ready for adventure…craving something new. As the days have passed, I’ve invested actual thought into the possibility of moving back to Rome for a year or so.
I feel it’s time to push my boundaries yet again and expand my universe. I want to feel as whole as I did while abroad. Becoming familiar with the unfamiliar, that’s the feeling I yearn.
Part of me wonders if this is just another one of my wild ideas, but then again, is it? At this point in my life, I don’t necessarily have anything holding me back. I still have the liberty to pick up and go. This is something that has been eating at me for a while and I feel it’s only right to act on it. I encourage any young adult/post-grad to consider the same. If the idea scares you, it’s probably something you should do!