Beautiful London

I haven’t been blogging on this as religiously as I shoud have from the very beginning of the summer, especially when it comes to Europe.

There was just so much to do and see every day that I truly never had the time to sit down and write out everything I did. I mostly did videos and just capturing every moment whenever I could.

But to say it was life-changing would be an absolute understatement. I have never experienced so much in such a short amount of time.

There was so much rich history hidden in the nooks and crannies of the beautiful London. Three weeks there was no where near enough to explore every inch of the city and what it can bring. No matter how many walking tours or bus tours you do, it is not enough.

The transportation was also very different to the suburb living I am used to. I have obviously been to New York and Philadelphia but you could always drive there and if anything, take a train and subways to get around the city.

In London, driving is not as common (at least not for the Americans who only come to study abroad). So the major modes of transportation were buses, trains, and tubes. We never used a black cab when we were there (they charge by the minute which gets very expensive with city traffic). Oyster cards become your best friend. Especially when you are traveling every single day into the city and into the diferent zones in London.

The food wasn’t too hard to get accomodated to but I did miss a lot of my favorites from home. If you are a Sprite lover like me, just know that the Sprite that is carried in the UK is sugar-free and tastes like absolute crap. Because of this, I am now a Coke lover which I never thought would ever happen. Thats the soda that they had most readily available and sometimes was even cheaper than water!

Another thing, dining out is a lot different than America. Most of the time, you have to seat yourself and ask for menus. You also do not tip like we do in America since in Europe they are paid good hourly wages (that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t leave a bit of a tip for the good service). You also have to always ask for the check or if you need something, they don’t check on you every so often compared to America.

These were just a few things that stood out to me most when it came to comparison. I could just go on about all the amazing things in London. From the places to the beautiful souls I met throughout the whole experience.

Without the amazing people I met in my program, I don’t know how everything would have went. They were truly friendships that I know will always remain because a bond is made like no other when you travel to another country, knowing absolutely no one.

If you are still reading this and considering studying abroad or just overall exploring the UK yourself, I highly suggest it. It will absolutely change your life and the perspective that you once held.

Love,

Youtube links to all of the other videos I made:

 

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The Little Things

A little bit of a life update: I am currently in the hospital for a lung exacerbation and it sucks. It sucks more than the usual sucking because I had planned on traveling this week. Timing is the absolute worst especially when you try to plan things out, even more so, when you have a life-threatening lung disease.

It is now two days since I stepped foot into the emergency room of the hospital. I was in pain; every breath seemed to exert far more energy than usual, my head throbbing, sweating and then growing cold again, and my cough left me huddled in a ball trying to hinder the pain as much as I could. It honestly felt like it would never end.

With my mom by my side, we sat in the chairs waiting. My name hadn’t even been called to put in the system. I held a box of tissues in my sweaty palm while a mask covered my face making it even harder to breathe. And then the tears just came pouring down, I couldn’t stop them.

It was another one of those life-defining moments. Those moments where it seems you are looking at yourself from a third person view. Seeing myself, pale, hunched over, having shameless tears that were slowly absorbing into my mask. This was the Caity I didn’t want to see nor did I like seeing.

I wanted to be the glowy, happy Caity that only had to worry about school, her job, and the people in her life.

I wanted to be the Caity that could travel to any place and be okay.

But that wasn’t me and the reality of it all is this Caity is always going to be around. Cystic fibrosis is going to have an impact on me for the rest of my life. It will always be a part of me.

So although I may not like seeing myself in such a state, I have to accept it.

Because the thing about us, as people, is we forget that we are human beings.

Human beings that go through so much, the wear and tear of the soul and the body. Every day we are constantly faced with a challenge and it might not be a life-altering one but it still affects you and everything in your life.

You aren’t perfect and that’s 100% okay. Because it’s in those moments where you feel at your absolute worst where you truly see how strong and amazing you are. It shows that you are real and struggle and I find that beautiful.

I still don’t know for sure how long I will be in here (I will keep you all updated). I still find ways to appreciate the little things like getting sour patch kids or having amazing people come and visit me to make my day. The love from my family and friends through every platform (texts, phone calls, Facebook posts/comments, etc.) mean the world to me and I am so grateful for the people in my life.

It’s really the little things that help you push through.

Love,

Pieces.

The thing is when people are cut out of our lives, there are still pieces of them that remain.

Old photographs you try to hide, somehow ending up on your nightstand. Or clothes you find in the corner of your room that you wore at a specific moment in time with them.

Whenever I drive past a place where a memory was made, it’s like I am instantly brought back to that moment when I was with that person.

I can see my old self with them, just living a normal life.

I look back on those moments and wish that I could have told myself what I know now.

But that’s not how life works.

You are meant to go through situations in order to learn from them, as painful as they may be.

What you overcome is what helps you grow.

Grow as an individual, grow in experience, grow in love.

There will always be pieces of that person lingering within your life because they were once a major part of it.

Once you accept that and not let it weigh you down in your new life, that’s when you can truly move on.

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Be Bold

It’s easy to let yourself fall into the grips of others.

Many people bring negativity around, in order to lessen your light.

The light that is your passions, dreams, and the unique traits that make you who you are.

You, the person reading this right now, are capable of changing this world and changing lives. Whatever purpose you want to fulfill in your life, you will do it.

You have that light, trust me, you do.

It kills me when I hear people say they cannot do something because they fear the judgment of others or they believe it won’t give them immediate satisfaction/success they yearn for.

This is what hinders you from truly shining brightly.

Go for whatever the hell you want to do. It can be the craziest and most unpredictable thing but if it gives you that motivation to live life to the absolute fullest, go for it.

If it brings you happiness, do it.

If you have a true passion for it, do it.

Forget about all of the fears or judgments.

This is your life. Live it boldly. In whatever way you want.

Be bold. 

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Boston, M.A.

Around three years ago, I went here when I visited a college with my cousins, Kristina and Nicole.

It has left a memorable mark on me because I still crave to go back.

The beauty of the city is a complete understatement.

It is filled with so many stunning views and the cleanliness of the city was very surprising.

I went during the summer so I haven’t experienced Boston its entirety, but let me tell you it was amazing.

The video above was one that I made from my time there. Don’t mind the awful videography, I was still learning.

We took a ferry from Long Island, NY in the early hours of the morning. It was a beautiful, purple shadowed sunrise and I loved every bit of it. From there, we drove to Boston.

If you don’t know the song, “Boston” by Augustana, I highly suggest you listen to it because that was all that played through my head my whole time there.

My cousin, Nicole, had some connections so we were able to get a very nice hotel room with the perfect view of the city.

We spent our days walking up and down the streets, visiting Thrift shops, small stores, food markets, and basically anything that interested us.

We went to the Skywalk Observatory where we could see all of Boston. It was in the Prudential Tower and you were able to go up to the 50th floor that gave you a 360 view of the city. The floor was littered with different facts about Boston and the people that made it even more remarkable.

We had ice cream at this cute little shop. They were known for making the ice cream in the shape of a rose so of course, we had to get that.

The weather was just right especially at night, you could wear anything you wanted and still feel comfortable.

We only spent two days and a night there, but we made sure to end with a bang by going to the Breakfast Club on our last day.

It’s a quaint, little diner, notorious for being based on the movie, The Breakfast Club. The walls were covered with memorabilia from the 80’s. They had “library specials” which were different food specials based on the names from the movie such as “The Princess” (Of course, I had it), “The Dork”, “The Criminal”, “The Jock”, etc. And let me tell you, it was banging.

On our way home from Boston, we made a stop at Wahlburgers after hearing rave views about it and for our family loving the Wahlberg brothers. It’s another place I definitely suggest.

I had so much fun there and made so many memories.

Boston, you have my heart and I am definitely going to come back.

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