The last few weeks have felt like a race to the finish line. Semesters in the UK are only 10 weeks, so this fall has seemed to fly by. With the end of the semester in sight, I’ve been working around the clock to finish up all of my final essays. But there’s still been some time for fun. I managed to squeeze in a day trip to Edinburgh last weekend and was so glad I did. I had heard so many people say how beautiful Edinburgh is, and wow were they right! Although we were only in the city for about 10 hours, we managed to see the Christmas Market, stop in the National Museum, grab nachos at the Frankenstein Bar, snag a tour of Holyrood Palace, explore the shops along Grassmarket street, and drink copious amounts of mulled wine. It’s a really wonderful city and I can’t wait to visit again. Although preferably when its not freezing.
But really what I wanted to write about today isn’t my trip to Edinburgh. I want to write about how this is my first Thanksgiving away from home. And not just away from home, but in a place where today isn’t a holiday. It was very strange to wake up and realize that today was just a normal day for me. I have class, need to finish a paper, and read an article. But at home, people are watching the parade and prepping turkeys for the roaster. I’m not looking for pity here at all, it’s just a very odd feeling to be so disjointed from a tradition that I’ve celebrated every year. Thankfully, my friends and I are getting together tomorrow after we all submit our papers and are having a non-traditional Friendsgiving. It’ll be full of nachos, mulled wine, pumpkin pie, and Gilmore Girls. I think it might be the start of a lovely new tradition. But anyway, before I have to go to class, I just wanted to reflect on all the things that I am thankful for this year because there’s nothing like distance to give you some perspective.
So this year I am thankful for:
- The opportunity to study in another country. It has been challenging at times, but I know that it will all be worth it in the end.
- My parents who has supported me through everything I do. They didn’t bat an eye when I said I wanted to go to school in the UK. They just immediately started to plan how we could make it happen. It’s been so hard for them having me away for the first time, but they have been unbelievably supportive and selfless the whole time. I am so lucky.
- My amazingly patient boyfriend who is putting up with time differences, crazy schedules, and being 1000s of miles apart. I am so lucky to have someone that supports me through all of this craziness and who makes time to call me every night. I will never get sick of the cheesy jokes or the outrageous what-if scenarios,
- The Office of Naval Intelligence who has FINALLY given my boyfriend a job. I am so relieved that he can finally move to D.C. and start his career after months and months of anxious waiting.
- New friends that have made moving to a completely new country so much more bearable. I’m so grateful to have found such great people that share so many of my interests and with whom I’ve already had such great adventures. I can’t wait to see what shenanigans we get into next year!
- Technological advances that make it possible to keep in touch with my friends and family. Who knew that I would to love social media so much?
- The fact that I am going home in less than two weeks. I never thought that going home for the holidays would even be a possibility but I am so glad that I am. I am so excited to everyone that I’ve missed so much.
- The Gilmore girls reboot on Netflix. ‘Nuff said.
There are so many more things, but I think I’ll leave it at that. Everyone have a great Turkey Day and keep your fingers crossed that I can manage to finish all my essays before I leave the country!