An Accidental Side Trip to Taiwan

Funny story: I accidentally put myself on a trip to Taiwan over Christmas. It wasn’t exactly anything I expected to do, and it sure wasn’t cheap, but I’ll be darned if it wasn’t one of the most memorable experiences I had here during my study abroad. Here’s how it happened: students at Ritsumeikan University as…

Italy: Living Large in Small Ways

Pop culture has ingrained in us, and young women especially, that Italy has a magical transformative qualityー ever heard of Roman Holiday or Lizzie McGuire the Movie? I have to admit that I fell for that allure when I signed up to take Italian freshman year, but despite not becoming an Italian popstar, I found…

Japan: Small Details Make For Big Differences

It’s interesting how much difference there is between the U.S. and Japan that doesn’t meet the eye at first. When I arrived here in Japan in early September, I had the idiotic delusion that American life is not that different from Japanese life. Of course, on the surface, that is 100% true: very few differences…

Japan: Food Heaven

Let’s talk food in Japan, because holy mother of God…the food here is just as good as you would expect. Now, before I continue, keep in mind that I’m not here on vacation, so the really expensive stuff is very much out of reach for me. (I’m saving the Kobe/Wagyu beef and Michelin Guide restaurants…

Japan: Not Quite Paradise

Most Americans (and Westerners, in general) who are interested in travelling hear amazing things about Japan: amazing food, beautiful scenery, polite people, and incredible culture. I’ve been lucky enough over the past two months to experience these things for myself. For example, I went to a world-renowned restaurant for tonkotsu ramen with a fellow American…

Italy: Eat Like a Pro

One of the classes I am most eager to take this semester is called “The Discovery of Italy through its Culinary Traditions.” The class meets twice a week, once for an in-class lesson about the history and culture behind Italian food and once for a cooking lab practical in the cafeteria. We’ll learn about food…

Train Traveling Guide

This summer as I study abroad at the University of Cambridge, having a home-base close to London has been extremely convenient! I have never been to the UK, so this was a great time to take weekend and day trips to many new places. My main suggestion is, if you’re in the UK for a…

London Trip!

A group from my study abroad program decided to stay a few off days in London, and we had a blast! We stayed at a hotel in St. Giles, and quickly became familiar with the Soho area. This was definitely a nice area to stay, close to the West End, restaurants, and a convenient tube…

South Korea: Practicing Korean

One thing that has surprised me since arriving in Korea is that when Korean people see me, often times they will just automatically speak to me in English. Even if you do not know Korean very well, you can get by in Korea pretty easily because many people in Korea speak English, and even if…

Cambridge: New Old Routines

After being on my study abroad experience for a full week, I can say that the most important thing to experiencing the new–while not completely letting go of everything familiar–is to find old routines from your life at home and adapt them to your new environment. For me, this routine was running. At home I…

Leaving Italy

After spending six wonderful weeks in Italy, it was finally time to return back to the States. To say I was sad, would be an understatement. Never again, will I have the opportunity to live in a different country and embrace myself into the culture. Although my study abroad trip was on the shorter side,…

England: The Amazing Month of June II

As my time in England was ending, I spent time with friends that I would miss when I left. I also went to the sister store of the bakery I loved, called Bakery 164. (Well, it’s more of a cafe that serves delicious sandwiches.) As I walked through the city streets, I took pictures of…