An Ancient Interest

I sat on my bed, slightly scared about the existence of bog mummies. I was in third grade and had been reading the Eyewitness “Mummy” book a little too late at night…again. At some point, my dad came into my room and we started talking about travel. He sat down next to me and promised that when I graduated high school, he would take me on a trip any place I wanted to go in the world.

I was instantly sure, though the graduation trip was nearly ten years away, that I would go to Egypt. The dream persisted for a couple years as I taught myself how to spell Tutankhamen and how to write my own name in hieroglyphics.

In fifth grade, we took a trip to Mexico. My interests took a natural (and seemingly necessary) shift from the Great Pyramids to step pyramids, especially massive El Castillo at Chichén-Itzá. Fast forward to my freshman year of high school and I had the opportunity to travel to Germany, Austria, and Switzerland with some of my classmates. Even though I never had any desire to go to these countries before, I yearned to go on the trip. I went home and presented the itinerary to my dad, who responded instantly with “You’re going to go, right?” I cashed my graduation trip in early. The more places I visited, the more I wanted to go: I officially caught the travel bug.

Me “holding” El Castillo, 2006

When I get home from a trip, I always chatter endlessly to my friends about my travel experiences. After a trip to Chicago, my childhood best friends affectionately joked that I sounded like an elderly person telling stories from their childhood: “When I was a young lad in Chicago…” From my first trip to Mexico to my most recent trip to Europe, I’ve kept some sort of travel journal to remember the little moments that would otherwise slip away. Once I made the decision to study abroad for a semester, I knew I wanted to start a blog to share my experiences with others–especially my friends and family at home. I’m starting a little early to document all the work and preparation that goes into spending a semester abroad.

Oh, and did I mention that I’m going to Egypt next month?

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