If you are in France please do yourself a favor and make it to some of the cities in the Loire Valley. Believe me I’m one of those individuals who is completely captivated by Paris. Heck, out of the last 12 months I have spent most of them in that city. It was also somewhat cumbersome to release myself from my comfort zone and travel to other places. I knew I had an end date to how long I’d be in Paris, which means that like any infatuated lover, I spent every day devoting myself to only that place.
One weekend, thanks to my incredible boyfriend Antoine and his amazing family who hosted me, I took the train in direction of tours. It had been my first time on the train in a while and the morning had proved to be a rough one. If you have never had to deal with french administration consider yourself lucky. The one thing I looked forward to the most was being able to breathe fresh air. As much as I desperately try to hide, I’m at my foundations a small town midwestern girl. The city itself was adorable in every way. The buildings and the river reminded me of Paris but as I came to learn more about the city and the surrounding area I fell even more in love with it and France as a whole. Although, I may romanticize these places I truly found, in my time there, that living just felt different. Even when I was physically in pain from bronchitis or stressed for my tests, there was this base level happiness that I remained the whole time I was there. This could be because I was in a whole new country and experiencing many new things consistently. If you know me I’m easily bored and that boredom leads to restlessness and anxiety, so constantly having a new stimulating situation could have swayed my feelings. However, It’s more likely that it’s just I enjoy the culture and atmosphere these places allowed me to experience and I felt at peace.
To reestablish my previous points, you should just go. Wherever that place may be (I know you are thinking of somewhere) just go. It really is as simple as that. I know you’re probably listing off all the reasons why you can’t, just stop. If you really want something you have to put every ounce of your energy into getting it.
Research, plan and execute your way there. Then when it fails the first time you must try again and again. There’s an idea I’ve heard in my countless hours in class that really applies to this situation. It is that if you consistently try and do an action (usually exercise but could be anything) and gradually increase the intensity of your action (research, running, or practicing a new language) you will inevitably see change. We tend to forget just how much we shape our future by only focusing on what we haven’t accomplished or putting off steps that could get us closer to our goal cause we are afraid of failing. I could explain all the amazing reasons you should visit the Loire Valley, des chateaux and their spectacular grander and history being a prime one, but that’s not what this is about (although I’ll post pictures). This is more of a wake up call to live life, because we all need to be reminded about what it really means to be alive. That is the single most important thing I’ve learned from living abroad. Stop waiting, just go.