Firstly I would like to take a moment to reflect on the tragic incident that happened a couple of weeks ago in Graz. In short, on the 20th June, a man raced through the streets of the inner city with his car and it resulted in deaths, countless injuries and shock for the entire city. Incidents like this can of course happen anywhere, but when things like this happen in such close proximity, somewhere where you would usually feel so safe, it really hits a nerve and there are so many ‘what ifs’ in all of our minds. Some people are still in hospital weeks on from the incident and the whole city is still shaken up. Walking through the centre for the first time after the incident was an emotional time for everyone, the candles, pictures and flowers took over the streets, but since the event the city has pulled together and shown nothing but strength and support for all the victims. Graz trägt Hoffnung ♥
So it’s almost a week. Seven days. A mere one hundred and sixty eight hours, before I am taken from the whirlwind that is my year abroad and put back into reality. A strange and illusive reality in which I fear I have lost touch of a little, after not having been on homeground since Christmas time. It’s a peculiar situation I guess, and I don’t think anyone who hasn’t been abroad for such a long time could ever understand how this all feels at the moment.
These last few weeks have been a mix of work and manic late night revision sessions at the dining table fueled with tea and biscuits. Exams have been admittedly challenging, but I guess that should be expected; studying everything from history and geography to phonetics and language disorders in the brain, I can’t say I haven’t had a bit of a juggle on my hands. Studying abroad is by no means an easy option, and I think it would be silly to state that there was such a thing. Whatever you choose to do abroad presents challenges of a different nature, but having overcome the challenge of successfully getting through the process of taking exams all in a foreign language, I feel like exams in English next year may be somewhat of a relief.
Though naturally exams means we are approaching the end of the semester, which therefore means that the time has also come to say a million and one goodbyes. Fellow year abroaders are one by one making their way back home, and I can’t believe that I will be soon doing the same. It sounds silly, but I never thought that I could possibly become so attached to a place and more specifically a community. I have met people from all corners of the globe and we have all come together by chance, to connect, share cultures, live and work together in order to build relationships and ultimately create memories of one special shared experience. I’ve made friends here who have taught me so much, inspired me and helped to bring me out of my shell. Each and everyone of you, whether you read this or not, I hope you know how much you mean to me!
My final week in Graz is going to be spent finishing off exams, tying up the loose ends of all the admin, forms etc etc, and then ultimately saying some emotional farewells! The other evening a friend and I went to the opera for one last celebratory outing to see ‘The Rocky Horror Picture Show’, and it was a perfect evening to lift spirits after exams and sad goodbyes earlier on in the day. The performance was truly one of the most exciting and fun productions I’ve ever seen! I’ve been to the opera here in Graz a lot over the past year but Rocky Horror truly was the cherry on top!
– erasmusexplorer.com –