My Future in France

I’m gonna be honest—France isn’t real to me yet.

Right now, I’m in the middle of a different new and transformative experience: I’m part of the Duke Technology Scholars program, which consists of about 20 women living in Durham attempting to navigate our tech internships together. For me, it’s my first time living in an apartment. It’s my first time having a 9 to 5 job, my first time working at a startup. My first time having to buy groceries and cook for all of my meals, instead of relying on the comforting constancy of a dining hall. Perhaps the strangest part is having to decide what to do with all of my free time, for once not taken up by innumerable homework assignments.


Adult life may be a lot to process sometimes, but at least my plants add some familiarity to the apartment. That’s why we’ve forgiven them for taking up the whole windowsill.
In the midst of adjusting to all this, Georgia Tech Lorraine has seemed like a distant dream, something to be eagerly anticipated but not considered deeply, an experience to anxiously await but not to plan, not quite yet. I’ve spent the past several months applying for the program, filling out forms, stressing about my visa appointment, et cetera—but even with all this preparation, it still hasn’t hit me that I’m going to be spending four months in Europe, immersed in different languages and cultures, road tripping (train tripping?) between countries, and taking a course load that’s half humanities classes. My brain does not compute these things.


Truthfully, I probably won’t fully comprehend any of this until I’ve already been living in Metz for at least a week. I do know, however, that even if the idea of GTL seems far away right now, that it’s going to be incredible. I’m going to explore cities I’ve never seen before, have experiences I could never imagine, meet new friends, try new foods, and so much more that I can’t anticipate. My time will be filled with a share of exciting triumphs, epic fails, and mundane routine in between, but all of it will be new, and all of it will teach me new things about myself and about the world. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity, and I can’t wait to make the most of it.


This is a sketch of my favorite spot in the Sarah P. Duke Gardens. I’m really excited to find and draw places that I love in Europe as well!
You can expect to read detailed accounts of the amusing escapades, exciting experiences, and moments both high and low that I’ll encounter in Europe! There will certainly be reviews about restaurants and art; honestly, in that department, I’ll probably love everything, but what I lack in objectivity I’ll make up for in enthusiasm. I’ll also be sure to post photos and sketches of anything from the beautiful French countryside and architecture to random flowers and pigeons–I intend to bring my DSLR and pocket sketchbook just about everywhere I go. I can’t wait to relay my takes on my travels! Au revoir et à bientôt!

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