Friday, 13 June 2014

Year Abroad Bucket List

Image Source: MorgueFile



I am currently filled with the excitement of a thirteen year old me, when I felt certain that the best years of my life were about to begin. Perhaps it's got something to do with the young Emily-esque slicked back ponytail that I'm sporting today, but perhaps it also has something to do with the fact that my second year at university is now over and so begins my year abroad.

The year abroad was one of the main reasons that I chose to study languages, and sure enough, several years after making that decision, it's finally arrived. As you read this, I will be hopping on a plane and jetting off to Paris where I will spend the next six months of my life, working full time. I think that the anticipation is part of what makes this so wonderful, but I can't wait to actually get there and meet new people. Then again that scares me, because what if I get there and it doesn't live up to my expectations? What if I don't make the new friends that I'm hoping to, or I don't enjoy my job? These are all things that could happen, but by no means a reason not to go. For better or for worse, I am ready to make some life-long memories - although I am hoping that it is for the better!

I'm actually more excited about this than I was to start university, although I don't think that I started my university life in the best state of mind. This time, I'm promising myself that it's going to be different. In fact, that may be one promise to myself that I can keep. I really want a way to help me to get as much as possible out of the short time that I am away. With this in mind, my friend and I came up with the idea of a 'year abroad bucket list'. I've heard that if you share your goals with others then you are more likely to achieve them, so today I want to share my list with you.


The Year Abroad Bucket List: Paris

01 Say yes It seems that this has turned into a bit of a blogger cliché, but there are so many times that I use tiredness as an excuse. I know that while working full-time I am going to be tired a lot, but life doesn't pause while you lie in bed and watch netflix. If I want to meet new people then I've got to get off my bum and do it!

02 Join a class or club or anything and GO Ironically, living in a city can be pretty lonely, so I want to give myself as many opportunities as possible to be meeting new people. When I joined university, I joined a few societies, but laziness often got the better of me and I simply wouldn't go. There's a longer story behind that, but I've got six months in Paris, so lame excuses simply won't do!

03 Make the most of my weekends I can feel the temptation to spend my weekends sleeping and watching TV already creeping in. Of course there will be plenty of time for that, but I am going to be living in one of the most well-loved cities in the world and a fifteen minute walk away from the Eiffel Tower. If ever there was a chance to grab life by the horns, then this would be it. Preferably I will not be spending all of my time window-shopping on the Champs Elysée, but that won't hurt, either.

04 Blog fortnightly Ideally I want to be blogging far more regularly than this, but I know that the reality of working full-time could well take its toll on me and I don't want to load myself with too much pressure. I want to use my blog to document my time away, and it's done so much for me over the past year and a half I couldn't bear to neglect it. Perhaps I should schedule some Saturday mornings in some quaint Parisian cafés to up the blogging motivation?

05 Weekends Away I don't want to be too specific with this one, because I haven't really got a feel for how expensive living in Paris will be yet (and I know that it will be), but with cheap trains going to every corner of Europe, I want to let my itchy feet loose a little. My 21st is coming up in October, so I'll be asking for some money and use being on the continent to my advantage to visit some other cities. I'll have lots of friends all over, so hopefully that should save on some accommodation costs! Perhaps I should make a list of cities I want to visit, too?


I'm happy to say that this is only just the beginning, and I am more determined than ever to make the most of this experience. I think that I'll write a second year abroad bucket list before the end of 2014 to also cover my time that I will be spending in Italy, but hopefully by then I'll be even wiser to how to make the most of my time. Remember: if you see any lazy weekend tweets from me in the coming weeks, give me a virtual kick up the backside and tell me to get out there and live!

Do you have any bucket list suggestions? Please share them in the comments!


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