London, I'll be back!

After returning home Preet Kaur reflects on her time spent in London during the summer of 2011 on BUNAC's Intern in Britain programme.

It's been exactly a month since I've been back in the states. I failed to write a reflection about my experience in London as whole earlier but life has been extremely hectic getting ready for school again and spending time with family and friends. Positive side, I've been so busy that I haven't had much time to  actually sit down and realize how much I miss London. Until this morning.....

Woke up to an email from one of my co-workers from London this morning and realized how I'd been running around staying busy to keep myself distracted so I wouldn't miss London. But I could only run for so long.  During a conversation with some of my sorority sisters today, I realized how quickly the whole process flew by. From the start of my application, to my interview, to moving to London and already back and into the third week of fall semester. Where did the time go? Did I really spend 3 months living in London or was it one of those dreams? I have to look through all my 600+ pictures from London to remind myself that it really did happen.

To remind me it wasn't all a dream...

Is it certainly difficult being back in Stockton after having had the world at the tip of my fingers (literally and figuratively) in London. Going from one of the biggest cities in the world to the small campus and dangerous city of Stockton, has been what everyone calls reverse culture shock. Every time someone asks me about my summer in London all I can say is "amazing" because I am unable to explain to them just how much emotions, stories, yearning, people, and experiences are compacted into that one word...AMAZING. Those of my friends who have been abroad understand what I mean. It's one of those things that you can't understand or explain to someone unless they have done it themselves.

The last couple weeks of my stay in London consisted of me researching into graduating early and applying to graduate programs in London. After coming home and laying everything out, I realized I would be taking a huge risk. Without going into the details, I decided to stay the full four years, pursue the dual degree in finance and international economics and continue to expand my professional skills over the next two years with internship and work experience. Did I make the right decision? Only time will tell....

Everyone always talk about how they've changed after having been abroad.  I don't find myself having changed a whole lot since this wasn't my first experience in terms of being abroad. But I do find myself having a different perspective on life. I understand the importance of a balanced life after having worked 40+ hour weeks and enjoying time with friends and family.  Don't get me wrong, I am still a workaholic. But I am making more of an effort to take out time for friends and enjoying life rather than always just working, working, and working. I've found myself saying no to offers because my priority in terms of where my time goes has been restructured. I am learning it is okay to not have my plate overflowing and that people will still love me just as much. Its nice to be able to stop and smell the roses once in a while!

London, thank you for being so amazing to me. I shall be back, don't you worry!

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