As our group of stressed, overtired, and hungry students piled into a tour bus about to head to Hong Kong, it finally hit me — the feeling of not knowing what to expect. Along with the not knowing came the fear that I might get “the full experience,” the experience that past SSU students have had and come back to tell tales of, great moments that I could only hope to have. But why must I compare my experience with theirs?
While walking through the canopy of a rain forest near Kuala Lumpur I was struck by the thought that this is one crazy and insane trip I am on; that no matter what, it will be the best for me. It was as if my thoughts turned from comparing my time in Southeast Asia with other students’ trips to where I really started to experience Southeast Asia for myself.
Simply put, I can never relive the moment that I am now in. My experience in Southeast Asia is special to me and only to me, no matter how much I explain how great it is to others. From the concert night at Northwestern University to the conversations I have with my homestay family, others will never grasp the full reality of the trip that I am currently partaking in.
In conclusion, my trip so far has been amazing. Every time I open my eyes I am greeted by the warm hearts of the people that I am living with. I stand in amazement every time I see the sun rise as it means another day in Paradise. To each his own and may the other trips following mine be even greater.