Thursday, July 3, 2014

Friends From Afar

Back in 2009, I was lucky enough to participate in a university exchange program that allowed me to spend a year living and studying (though I'm not sure I ended up doing much of the latter) in the south of France. As cliche as it may sound, it was one of the best experiences of my life. There are countless perks of studying abroad but my favourite part was getting to meet fellow students from all over the world. I made many friends that year but I became especially close with three girls: Christine (from Austria), Sarah (Morocco) and Hana (Czech Republic).

From left to right: Hana, Christine, Me, Sarah

Together we traveled both within France and abroad, grumbled over inefficiencies of the infamous French bureaucracy, learned about each other's countries, lingered in cafes far longer than we probably would have if we'd had any important work to do and watched too many movies on tiny laptop screens (because our low-budget dorms didn't have TVs) squished together on one of our tiny beds (because the aforementioned dorms didn't have common rooms either). Not that I'm complaining - everything about that year was amazing, and these girls were a large part of what made it that way.

La Grande Place, Brussels

After a teary farewell, we were reunited in Canada a little over a year later when the three of them came to visit me in Vancouver. We had an incredibly memorable couple of weeks together catching up and exploring some of beautiful British Columbia. 

Cathedral Grove, British Columbia

Fast forward nearly three years later: the four of us came together again just this past weekend in Hamburg, Germany. It was like no time had passed; I felt like I'd been laughing with these girls only yesterday. While I definitely enjoyed Hamburg as a destination (blog still to come) the highlight of the trip was getting to see some of my dearest friends, ones that I would never have met had I not made the decision to study abroad.

Making friends from all around the globe - yet another reason to travel.

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