Hey Everyone! This is a bit different of a post. This is the first of a series of updates from my travels through Europe. I started by writing an email to a mentor, then decided to forward it to some friends and family. I attached some of the photos I had been taking, and a quickly realized this needed to be posted to the Mindmill. There will be much more to come, along with more podcast episodes. Enjoy!
Wow. just wow.
I cant believe its already been almost 5 weeks since I left for Europe. As per usual, time flies. However, Ive been attempting to savor everyday, enjoy the little things, and document my experience while avoiding screen addiction. Living abroad absolutely comes with some growing pains, the desire to stay connected to American culture, news, and relationships is a constant struggle. I find myself on social media more than I hoped, one of the reasons I have avoided getting a phone service while here. Yes, it would be nice to be connected for maps, bookings, uber, etc. But the temptation to get sucked into screens is very strong. Theres so much beauty to be discovered when disconnected. Along that thought process, I decided to put together this post to update all you lovely people back home. I love and miss you all, and wish there was more time in the day to catch up with everyone.
First off… the photos and podcasts. I am writing this to many of you who aren’t involved in social media. Ive been posting regularly, but it doesn’t quite capture the genuine experience. Social media can be a highlight reel, and im not eager to spend all my time feeding that monkey. However, I have been taking TONS of photos and videos, writing daily, and continuing to work on my podcast. If you’d like to listen to the podcasts, they are all free and on themindmill.com, or apple podcasts if thats how you listen. I uploaded my first album of photos here in Europe to flickr, heres the link https://www.flickr.com/gp/156287759@N02/3ozQqK. Ill be updating to this page regularly, and try to let you all know when there’s new pics.
Spain is amazing. A truly beautiful country and culture. As I like to do, Ive spent the first leg of my trip in one place, Almeria, getting adjusted to the European way of life and diving into the culture. I ride a bike everywhere, eat tapas, work from cafes with a view of the Mediterranean, and spend time with my family and friends who live here. We went to Granada for a weekend, which reminded me of how much Europe there is to discover. Granada is full of history, beautiful views and vibrant culture. As comfortable as Almeria has become, the time is coming to depart and explore this wonderful continent.
In about a week, Im leaving for Barcelona. Ill be there for roughly a week before heading into France. Originally, I had planned to venture north; with Paris, Berlin, and Amsterdam being my main destinations. However, I quickly realized that winter here in Europe is equally as nasty as it can be in the US. A social post of snow and gloom in Paris inspired my audible in plans. So the new plans is to stay on the southern coast. A while in the South of France, followed by venturing into Italy. Ill know this week if my visa can get extended. If so, Ill plan to venture up north in the spring when everything thaws.
Each time I travel, I find I learn as much about myself as I learn about the countries I visit. It truly is a vehicle for self-discovery. We get so comfortable in our bubbles; sometimes the most valuable thing we can do is remove ourselves from what were used to. There are some lonely times, some scary times, some confusing or awkward language barriers; but its these experiences that heighten our awareness of how fortunate we are to have such comforts.
I love you all. I really miss each one of you. Thanks for the messages, Ill try to stay in touch as best as possible. And I’ll see you in the Summer!
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