Monday, 22 February 2016

Subways and Train Rides and Flights -- Oh My!

Travel.  That is the most common topic at Harlaxton, whether it is trying to book trips or getting asked about where you are going that weekend.  In case you were wondering, traveling to different countries is just as wonderful and exciting as I have imagined it. From touring London to going on Paddywagon tours in Ireland, every weekend I am excited to see new places, not to mention getting new stamps in my passport!

One of my most memorable adventures so far has been to Berlin, Germany.  My friends and I saw the typical sites, like the Berlin Wall Eastside Gallery and Checkpoint Charlie, which were both very humbling experiences.  However, the one event that I will never forget is the Sunday morning when we were trying to return back to Harlaxton.

Earlier that weekend, we received the subway schedule from our hostel, so we planned to get to the nearest station at 4:30 a.m. in order to make our flight that left around 7.  However, when we got there, we learned that the line that we needed did not start running until 5:30 a.m.  Once we caught the first train, there were several delays at different stations, and we finally made it to the airport with only 30 minutes until our gates closed.  As a result, we had to sprint through the airport, and we made it to our flight with 2 minutes to spare!

Throughout this experience, we all remained calm and worked together in order for us to make it through the airport without losing anybody.  As soon as we boarded the plane, we were so relieved and thankful that we managed to make our flight.  Through this trip, I learned several invaluable life lessons:

1.   Not everything is going to go exactly as planned, so be prepared to be flexible, especially with travel.  Even though we obviously wanted to make the flight, we had a backup plan that would have enabled us to get back to Harlaxton safely.

2.   Calmly deal with every situation.  Panicking in stressful situations will not help, so take deep breaths and try to think rationally.  Even though we were worried, none of us were stressed to the point where we could not function (or maybe it was just a super early morning).

3.   Take every moment, both good and bad, in stride.  All of the great things that happened, like visiting museums, wandering around Berlin, and laughing over dinner, are fantastic memories.  However, Sunday morning, though not the best scenario, was a learning experience that helped prepare us for future situations like this.

While my Berlin trip may have had a slight mishap, it is definitely one of my most memorable experiences so far, and it was definitely a trip to remember!
Written by: Jessica Vaughan

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