I knew coming into this semester that I would only be here at Harlaxton for 15 weeks. In my mind, that meant I had the opportunity to travel to 15 different places in Europe. I’m over here, I might as well take every opportunity I can and try to see as much as I can!
Students who previously studied at Harlaxton had warned me that it’s smart to give yourself 1 or 2 weeks to rest throughout the semester without traveling. I thought that was crazy! I didn’t want to “waste a weekend” when I could go to Germany to just stay in Grantham. It seemed like a waste in my mind.
But, boy was I wrong.
I packed my schedule from day 1. I started traveling on the first weekend, and haven’t given myself a week off yet. 11 weeks straight of trains, airplanes, walking tours, hostels (some nicer than others), sleeping in the airport, and taxi rides. It all sounds glamorous when you talk about traveling to Barcelona, Rome, Dublin, Scotland, Greece, Germany, Austria, and France-but it’s not as “easy” as it may seem.
Traveling is exhausting to say the least. It’s hard to factor in all of the hours you will spend in transport just to get to a different country, even though it may appear to be close and accessible. Don’t get me wrong, I have enjoyed each and every weekend I have spent traveling, but giving myself one week to relax would’ve been nice.
Don’t see “taking a weekend off” as wasting a weekend. See it as a chance to relax, recharge, and appreciate this experience. On weekday afternoons when I don’t have much homework and have some free time, I always catch myself thinking about how lucky we all are to be living these experiences. This semester is our chance to be selfish, and do things that make us happy.
Remember that it’s okay to take a break. You’re not wasting time by giving yourself some time to relax and just breathe.