Chris McCann | Bologna, Italy | Post 2

Chris McCann | Bologna, Italy | Post 2

Venice. It’s that iconic city used as the setting of countless films and novels, whose panorama is depicted by painters from the venders on its streets all the way to Van Gogh. Because of its reputation, Venice stirred emotions and even some concerns during my little trip. I was met with feelings that were expected, and but also some that caused me to take a more realistic approach to the magical city. Upon my arrival in Venice, taking the train…

Read More Read More

Elena Schultz | Paris, France | Post 2

Elena Schultz | Paris, France | Post 2

Enshrouded in the quintessentially Parisian mélange of heavy post-rain air and cigarette smoke, I made my daily walk to the Jourdain metro station this morning to catch the train to my last class of the week. My route to school, whether at the Columbia-run international program at Reid Hall or the Université Sorbonne Nouvelle, has become a daily variation on a theme. During the 10-minute walk (or six-minute run, depending on how late I am) from my home in a…

Read More Read More

Talya Phelps | Prague, Czech Republic | Post 2

Talya Phelps | Prague, Czech Republic | Post 2

Featured image: Prague Castle (Pražský hrad), St. Vitus Cathedral, and the iconic red roofs of the city viewed from the Petřín Lookout Tower Have you ever been minding your own business on your way to work or school, allowing the tide of commuters to buoy you along as you board the metro, when you suddenly experienced a total collapse of your subjective self-identity? Because I haven’t. In fact, I had no idea this was a normal thing for anyone to experience…

Read More Read More

Evelyn Frick | St. Petersburg, Russia | Post 2

Evelyn Frick | St. Petersburg, Russia | Post 2

Last week my Russian professor asked me if I own a gun. For anyone who knows me well, that question is a nonstarter. I abhor guns. I abhor what they stand for in American culture. And I abhor the idea that they make us safer. I responded with a scoff. “Не Конечно!” (“Of course not!” in English) But as she went around the table asking the other students the same question, I realized her inquisitiveness was not part of a…

Read More Read More

Tyler Boyle | Amsterdam, Netherlands | Post 2

Tyler Boyle | Amsterdam, Netherlands | Post 2

Featured image: Local graffiti artists fill the streets of Jordaan, a hipster, local neighborhood in the West of Amsterdam, with works of art.  This particular photo was taken on Haarlemmerstraat, across the street from a local tattoo parlor. Well, I am a month and a half in, with three months to go, and I can successfully say: I’m thriving!  Here are a few quick updates in case you were wondering how my adjustment has gone in the past two weeks: I…

Read More Read More

Yina Wang | Budapest, Hungary | Post 1

Yina Wang | Budapest, Hungary | Post 1

I often find myself staring off into space when I’m traveling alone on the tram, coming home from my friend’s apartment across the river. The Danube River splits the bustling city of Budapest into two respective parts: Buda and Pest. This view above greets me every night as I make the trek back home to my own flat. What’s not to love? The Hungarians are good-humored people, and even with my broken Hungarian, I still manage to have small conversations…

Read More Read More

Kimberly Nguyen | Exeter, England | Post 1

Kimberly Nguyen | Exeter, England | Post 1

Featured image: This is a hidden view of Exeter.  It requires leaving Primark at the Guildhall the wrong way. “You will come away bruised. You will come away bruised but this will give you poetry.” -Yrsa Daley-Ward If you ever want to find out what you’re made of, book a flight to a foreign country and arrive with nothing. Put all the things that bring you comfort in your checked luggage and have your airline lose it.  This will make you…

Read More Read More

Elena Schultz | Paris, France | Post 1

Elena Schultz | Paris, France | Post 1

As I write this from a petite classroom in Paris, bundled in layers of wool sweaters and counting the days until the city finally allows public buildings to turn on their central heating, I’ve realized that today marks one month exactly since my plane first touched down at the Charles de Gaulle airport. Dizzy on 48 hours of sleepless travel and complimentary Air France wine, I stumbled into the city of lights captivated by a singular fear that perhaps I’d…

Read More Read More

Tyler Boyle | Amsterdam, Netherlands | Post 1

Tyler Boyle | Amsterdam, Netherlands | Post 1

Featured image: A canal in the heart of the city center. Studying abroad is something that has been on my radar since I was in the sixth grade when I attended my first college visit.  I remember walking into the hallway where international relations and study abroad opportunities was centered at the University of Kentucky.  There, I saw a bright green sign with the country flags of where all their students were currently studying; I can’t remember exactly how many countries…

Read More Read More

Evelyn Frick | St. Petersburg, Russia | Post 1

Evelyn Frick | St. Petersburg, Russia | Post 1

Featured image: Smolny Cathedral (1748-1761) on the grounds of Smolny Institute for Noble Ladies. If this style looks familiar it is because the architect who designed and built The Winter Palace, Rastrelli, also spearheaded the design of this cathedral. As an interesting anecdote, the nearby Smolny Institute is notable in Russian cultural history as being a school for upper class women. In Russian, the word “Smolinska” (I think that’s right, it might also be “Smolinka” I can’t remember) carries the same…

Read More Read More