Date

Written By

Merrick B.

Region

Massachusetts

Voyage To The South Pacific 2018

The World is too Small for Goodbyes

My People to People travel experiences have changed my life in ways I could never imagine. After a type one diabetes diagnosis at the age of 14, I never could picture myself half way across the world without my family, let alone with 40 strangers, however People to People International Travel made this all possible for me. I was nervous to embark on a trip for 19 days with people I barely knew, however it has taught me more than any classroom could ever teach. I have learned how to turn strangers into my closest friends. I have learned how to overcome homesickness, and that no matter where you go, home will always be there waiting for you when you return. I have learned how to fit in to different cultures through homestays in Germany and New Zealand. I have learned that happiness radiates throughout the whole world, and sometimes you just have to go out and see the world and all is has to offer to find it. Most of all I have learned that if I can travel the world even with a chronic illness, anything is possible. My trips have made me stronger; they have allowed me to find myself and to realize there is so much more to this world than my little hometown and that there is so much out there to explore.

While I was somewhat sad and nervous to leave my family for a few weeks, towards the end of both of my trips my heart ached thinking about going home, knowing I would miss the 40 strangers that had just become my family away from home. The goodbyes are bittersweet, however as one traveler from my trip said, “the world is too small for goodbyes, I do not say goodbye, only see you soon!” I truly hope that I get to see my travel friends (or as we liked to call it, “team”) in the near future, and I have already been able to visit and stay with families of my closest PTP friends. I have made lifelong friends, the friends that you hope to see at your wedding, the ones you grow old with. I could not imagine my life without the people I have met through my People to People travel trips, and I am forever grateful for the experiences and life lessons I have gained through my travels. Not a day goes by without reminiscing over my favorite moments I’ve had in Europe and the South Pacific. From trying to hold up the Leaning Tower of Pisa, to surfing the beaches of Aussie, I have memories imprinted in my heart that I will cherish always and forever.

It is crazy to think one adventure could change your whole outlook on life, however these adventures truly did! If you ever have the opportunity to travel with People to People, I promise you will have the time of your life, so go, start packing, it’s time to see this beautiful world and all it has to offer!

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