Before coming abroad, all I could think of was how I couldn’t wait to get away from my family for a little. As a 20-year-old, I can say parents can be a little suffocating at times- and everyone needs a break now and then. This was finally my break to get away for 4 months! What happened the second I got to Barcelona? I freaked. I needed my family. I called my mom every day and was so homesick- weird right? Not weird at all actually. The more and more I talked to my friends abroad here, the more I realized that they were all homesick to some extent. This made me feel a little better and sure enough within a few weeks, I was getting texts from my mom begging for me to call because I was so busy with my second life here in Barcelona. I didn’t talk to my family much for a while and sure enough, the homesick waves came in every once in a while. This is when I realized my parents were coming soon to visit me. AMAZING feeling knowing you get to show your parents your second life. I was basically a tour guide for a week, who woulda thought. This experience reminded me how important keeping in touch with your family is no matter where you are traveling or for how long. At the end of the day, they are the ones that most likely convinced you to travel in the first place so you owe them updates and pictures! I am an only child so my parents are a big deal to me and are heavily involved in my life in every way. I used to hate this but being abroad has proven that they are super important and have made me the person I am today. Without their encouragement to go abroad I don’t think I ever would’ve (or without the funds). Having no siblings seems like an awesome thing but it can get lonely but it actually turns your parents into your best friends.
While they were here and I showed them around this amazing city, we decided to visit some family in France that we hadn’t seen in some time. Again, along the theme of family- this experience was eye-opening and made me appreciate them so much more and respect the different culture they lived in. We got to be the guests for a weekend and got the full tour of the south of France. Sounds amazing right? It was. Some of the highlights were 1. obviously being with such important people in my life and getting to experience something so amazing with them 2. the community and lifestyle 3. the food! 4. the flamingoes. FLAMINGOES. I never have seen a flamingo before so it was unreal to say the least. We toured the area in the rain for some of the trip, but that didn’t take away from the beauty in any way. Montpellier is definitely somewhere I recommend going- preferably in the summer months. I went in March and it was a little chilly and the beaches weren’t open yet which was a bummer, so definitely go when it’s hot out! The whole experience will be amazing for you too I’m sure of it, but make sure you bring family or people you really care about. Those are the moments you’re going to remember the most because you shared them to awesome people! Take in all the time you have with your loved ones, life is short my friends!!