The End of the Road

I always knew that my journey of a lifetime would come to an end. But now that it has, I still can’t quite believe it. Yesterday, February 3, 2016 was the longest day of my life. In total it was 38 hours long. It started in Christchurch New Zealand, my home for the last 5 weeks and brought me back to school at the University of Delaware, still on the 3rd. It took 4 airports, 3 flight, 2 delays, 2 coffees, countless repeats of the same playlist, and 10 snapchats to documents the progress. And now, it’s over. Done.

I can’t believe that technically just yesterday I was halfway around the world, in the other hemisphere. It was warm, sunny and in the 80s. Now I’m in Delaware where there is some snow on the ground. In New Zealand the sun was out till 9:30pm and now it’s gone by 5:30pm. But even though it’s the end of a chapter, it’s the close of an amazing one.

I started this journey with 40 strangers. Yes I knew some of them already, two or three were already considered friends, but most I didn’t even know their name. And there we were on a 13 hour flight together. And in just a few days these people were my closest companions. We sat on endless buses together, hiked, biked, played pickup games of soccer and volleyball. We ate all our meals together, took class together, and traveled every where together. At the end of the day we unwound together, watching movies and just hanging out.

We also did some really heavy duty bonding activities. You can’t say your not friends with the people you bungee off a platform 134 meters down into a canyon with, jump out of a plane 1300 feet up with or

paddled down a class 5 rapid with You can’t say you’re not close if you can randomly strike up some acoustic covers of Riptide or I’m Yours around a campfire just because.

Yes it is the end of the trip. But the friends will hopefully fill the chapters of the story to come. And true I’m no longer surrounded by the gorgeous scenery of New Zealand, with towing mountains, green rolling fields and sparkling turquoise waters around every bend, but I’ve seen it. And that’s more that many people will ever be able to say.

So in the words of Bilbo Baggins, I shall steal his idea of how to finish his book of his unexpected journey simply say that I “lived happily ever after until the end of my days”.

 

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