After 12-plus hours of traveling, which involved dealing with the various shenanigans of international security and AirFrance, our Humanities II class was annoyed, weary and beyond hungry.
Yet we had finally arrived in Prague, located in the Czech Republic; a place I had only been able to fantasize about for the past year.
The month spent in Prague was nothing short of amazing, to say the least. With the aid of our awesome, multilingual professors - Cynthia Klima and Lori Bernard - who accompanied and translated for us when necessary, we were without boundaries in this prestigious city.
The architecture is an unforgettable part of Prague. The rolling, red rooftops with the allure of beautifully painted buildings curving down every street are a sight only to be found in Europe. A mere stroll down a cobblestone street is something I miss even now.
After visiting the Klementinum - which is reminiscent of the library in Beauty and the Beast, with its sliding ladders and shelves upon shelves of bookcases - touring castles that made us feel like we were royalty ourselves and eating scintillating cuisine, it was next to impossible not to fall in love with the city.
A more humbling and emotional part of the trip came when we visited the Jewish Quarter in Prague. There, we were slapped in the face with the results of anti-Semitism, ignorance and unfounded hatred. The sight of walls plastered with names of Holocaust victims and pictures drawn by children in concentration camps is something that does not leave your conscience. We also toured the Terezín concentration camp in the Czech countryside where we were able to walk through the eerie town in which it was located - an unpleasant yet historically valuable experience.
For three days our class traveled to Vienna, Austria where we delved into the inner workings of Sigmund Freud's house and mind. After touring Schönbrunn palace, navigating our way through a labyrinth in a royal courtyard and climbing to the top of the Gloriette, it was hard not to gasp for air at the breathtaking sight of the classy city.
The opportunity to socialize with students from other countries presented itself in the nightlife scene of Prague. Over a great deal of techno music blaring from the speakers - not to mention various language boundaries - we were able to compare and contrast the differences of our cultures. For those who enjoy "getting jiggy with it," Prague is home to the largest nightclub in central Europe: the five-story Karlovy Láznê, which provided an unforgettable night of fun for our group.
With less than a week left abroad, we tried to take in as much of the city as possible. After climbing multiple towers to see every possible angle of the city, eating at every delectable restaurant with a noteworthy reputation and paddle boating underneath the Charles Bridge, we came to the realization that we never wanted to leave this beautiful city.
Studying abroad, even for a month, is a lifetime experience that is unmatched by anything else. There is no way to describe the feeling of happiness instilled in me when I think back to my time spent in Prague and I can only hope to visit again sometime soon.