It’s my last day living here:
In the words of my friend Zac, “Mary Chapman Court is the ugliest building in Norwich—by far.”
The stories we’ve shared of the first time we experienced this prison block involve some of us filing for room changes immediately, exclaiming “OH HELL NO” as we sat on the bed, and wanting to cry at the sight of the cinderblocks we have for walls. Yeah, no joke. Cinderblocks for walls.
One month in, all requests for room changes were pulled because I think we all realized how amazing we actually had it. Aside from the eye-aching hideousness and the prison cell resembling rooms, we were a bunch of students living in the center of a small—but beautiful—English city.
I’m sure I could write a novel of all the memores I’ve acquired in this ugly prison. I’ll talk about our conversations around the kitchen table, shared vegetarian dinners, evenings on the balcony and birthday parties. I’ll remember to write about how we laughed, cried (well, I cry AND laugh at the same time…) and did everything else together. How some of us didn’t even have a single friend on campus because who needed anyone else when we all had each other from the beginning?
I leave Norwich tomorrow morning. I don’t know how to write about all I’ve learned. I don’t know how to say thanks to every person I’ve met here from all around the world. Even those who may have hurt me without knowing, to those whose words mean more to me than they might ever know—everyone has contributed to my growth and made me such a better person.
When I came to England, I realized there were so many things I didn’t know that I didn’t know. I thought I understood the power of diversity. I didn’t until I really experienced it. I thought I had a grasp on my country’s role in relation to the rest of the world. Nope. I thought I knew what it meant to be worldly, what it meant to be educated, what it meant to even live. You can never know any of these things until you’re stripped from your comfort zone.
While I’m anxious to return and see the city skyline as I drive down the Turnpike enroute to my hometown, and go to the beach and lie in my bed and give my best friend a hug, I fear losing everything I’ve learned here. Even worse, I fear losing this “high on life” ecstasy I’ve found while in Norwich. I’m worried that I may get frustrated, when I realize the people around me might not and probably will not understand because they could not understand everything I’ve gone through.
Despite my fears, I have an aura of excitement. I’m excited to reenter the U.S. and my final year of college with this brand new attitude that I’ve acquired. It makes me wonder how wonderful I’ll make my senior year of college for myself and how this experience will shape the rest of my life and all the choices I make in it.
Thank you to everyone who’s been reading this by the way. It makes my day to hear good comments. Because of the response from my friends, I think I’m going to continue blogging, but not here. I’ll probably take it to a wordpress or blogspot. Something like that.