Hello lovely people I only have a week and a half left in Rome and all the feels are hitting me as I start packing up and reflecting on my time here. I'll save all the sappy stuff for next week's post though.
Besides the stress of final tests and projects, the craziness that comes with travelling, and this weird emotional tornado-thingy that is beginning, I am actually having a lovely week of beginning to enjoy the lasts and reminiscing with my friends.
People have been documenting their experiences in all different ways, but I definitely feel like it is a super personal and important thing to do to be able to look back and reflect on your experiences and all of the things that the trip did for you. Clearly, my blog was one of my ways of documenting my time, and I truly will look at my posts for years to come to be able to see that timeline and the changes within myself. I've taken thousands of photos and made some really awesome videos with the help of my friend's handy Go Pro (something I am really jealous of and totally wish I would have had my own but will be purchashing for future adventures). However, I have been working on a few other more personal ways of documenting my adventure.
I would definitely suggest planning in advance how you are going to document your time and stick to your plan, as some of the ways require more time or things that you might need to collect as you travel.
With that, here are some of my favorite ways I found of documenting my adventures:
1. Write a Blog: Pretty self explanatory as you are reading my blog right now, but it has been a great way to share my thoughts and advice with other study abroad-ers, make connections (I actually met up with a few travellers who contacted me after reading my blog), and let my family keep up with what I am doing without having to send a billion separate emails and whatnot.
2. Keep a Journal: This is a perfect one to do on the go because you don’t have to worry about wi-fi. You can keep your journal in your bag and write whenever you have a free moment whether it’s in between classes or on an airplane. This is much more personal than a blog because you will probably be the only one who sees it. You can choose whether you will write in it every day or maybe only once a week, but make sure to stick to it.
3. Create a Video: Take short video clips of everything you do, compile it into one (or several videos), add a fun song, and woooo you have a video that you can watch to relive your adventures. My biggest tip for this one is to film the random moments that may not seem so relevant at first. All of my friend's and I's videos are about half of us just eating, dancing around, or our reactions as we walked through the streets. Those actually turned out to be my favorite clips of some of the most special moments on my travels.
4. Take the Same Picture Everywhere you Go: This was one of my favorite things I did, and most of my friends did this as well! It turns out to be sort of a fun and quirky collection of you with your favorite thing or doing something funny all over the world. I had a friend take a picture of her drinking a coke in every country to send to her family because she loved coke so much. Another friend took her picture with the Iowa State Flag on all her travels. Of course, many of you saw mine- everywhere I went and I saw a fountain, I climbed in and snapped a picture. Weird, but it really reflects me and the weird stuff I like doing. Hot tip on that one though- sometimes fountain climbing adventures resulted in some question from security people and whatnot. I would possibly recommend picking an activity slighty less questionable by the authorities.
5. Make a Scrapbook: If you are an artsy person, this would be incredible. Personally, the two I've made aren't really scrapbooks, but they are awesome keepsakes nonetheless. I did one sketchbook that I filled with all of my sketches from around Rome. I did about 3-5 really nice sketches a week and am having them bound into a book this week. The other one I did for my mixed media class and it is a book that I filled with photos that I decaled, painted overtop of, and glued in items from my travels to tell the story of my experience here. It's pretty cool and it's actually being featured in an art show when I get home!
6. Collect the same item everywhere you go: I collected postcards and a charm for a necklace in each country I visited. I had another friend collect cheesy touristy shirts to make into a quilt when she got home. Something very basic but also cute that I wish I'd done was get a coffee mug in every country... more specifically a Starbucks mug. I have a bad coffee problem that forced me to drink Starbucks in every country I traveled too. The thing is that they actually sell the cutest mugs at each one with the skyline of that city of them. They're adorable but also totally would have been too heavy for my suitcase so ignore the last few sentences of me admitting my Starbucks problem.
That's all I have for you this week! Check out my photos from my last weekend trip ever to Budapest! Also go buy some tissues and send them my way for next week's blog post.
Much Love to you all.
I'm Liz Bixenman, an interior design student living in Rome for the semester. When I'm not doing schoolwork, you can find me wearing a cat shirt, reading a book, and most likely eating more carbs than I'm proud of.