Cape Town, South Africa

  I once thought South Africa was a geographical region, rather a country. Such as “I’m from South Africa” was comparable to “I’m from the Midwest”. At least I realized there are white people in South Africa, thanks to The Disney Channel’s “The Color of Friendship” and of course Cady ...

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Barcelona

Sophomore year of high school, I anticipated my fourth period Spanish class with Señorita Hillen. The advanced class mastered simple conversations and focused on Spanish Culture. Upon flipping through slide shows about Gaudi, I urged to visit Sagrada Familia, Parc Guell, and other famous houses designed by Spain’s greatest architect. With Barcelona ...

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Greece

Thursday, October 31st For the past two decades, Halloween has been my favorite holiday. A marathon of classic thrillers and costumes, a party-worthy duo. Though I managed to stream “The Shining” with friends, the day-long cruise to Corfu, Greece killed the Halloween spirit. But I couldn’t complain. We were on a cruise ...

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Bolzano

Biking Bolzano With included spas and breakfast buffets, Mom did alright booking the Stadt Hotel in Bolzano. Wednesday morning started with mimosas, strudel, and fresh fruit before our bike ride. What a ride it was. We passed hundreds of Italians biking and jogging on this calm, cloudy morning up to ...

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Rome

Early Thursday morning, rain poured down the streets of Florence and a flashback of yesterday’s dreadful walk from the train station appeared in my head. Two hours south, Rome welcomed us with warmer weather and overcast. Past the platforms a mall of stores and restaurants towered our path leaving the ...

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Salzburg

The Hills Are Alive  8:30 AM, birds chirping, sun shining. The Martins are not. A day wasted on a train sparked a mood swing and restlessness. Walking to the tourist information desk, I carried a poor attitude and snapped at my mother’s lack of direction. Long days with the parents ...

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A Day on a Train

During our last hours with Gerlind, Walter, and Tim, we opened up Dad’s blood sausage at breakfast with our croissants and homemade jam. By noon us Martins were on our way to the train station after several hugs, thank-yous, and goodbyes. The train to Salzburg left at 1:10. We hustled ...

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Stuttgart Day 2

Strolling Around Stuttgart Allowing myself to wake up naturally, I figured I would have enough time to stretch out on a morning run before breakfast. This thought dissipated when I rolled over to see the screen on my phone read: “10:39 A.M.” No time for a run, I’ll eat instead. ...

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Stuttgart Day 1

Meet The Parents Straight past the exit gate, my mom stands waiting in apprehension. Once I catch her attention, her fists fly up and her eyes begin to water. My parents visit me at school every October, but this fall their trip was a bit longer than a nine-hour car ride ...

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The Half-Way Mark

Studious After imprinting copious notes about Socrates and the Sophists, my frazzled brain had enough of the library and pleaded for a mental break. Quarter ’till midnight, the young people of Florence moseyed to the bars. As I skipped my apartment to avoid extra reviewing and to soak up the ...

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