WOW! I am on my second flight of the day, Atlanta to Sao Paolo, and I truly cannot believe this is actually happening. Okay let me back up a little. This semester I am travelling to the Brazilian Amazon on the School for International Training (SIT) program on Amazon Resource Management and Human Ecology. I am an Environmental Studies major at Connecticut College and consider myself a dedicated environmentalist. My specific area of interest is in rainforest conservation and on exploring and decreasing the many affects of deforestation, so as you can imagine this is a most exciting trip for me! This will be my second visit to the rainforest but my first to the Amazon (I had the good fortune of studying in the Panamanian and Costa Rican rainforests during the spring of 2007). My hopes are that by keeping this blog, not only will I have the opportunity to share the specifics of my trip with you all, but that by learning of my experiences you may gain a greater appreciation for the paradise which is the rainforest and additionally be inspired to continue adopting environmentally friendly practices in your daily life so that together we can help save the earth – a lofty hope, I know, but an important one at that .
Today I left at 4:40 pm from Boston, MA (my home) filled with both excitement and a bit of nervousness. On the first flight I sat next to a very nice guy who seemed rather impressed and jealous of my trip – this type of reaction continues to freak me out as I personally don’t feel that my trip is all that admirable or that big of a deal. Either way it was great to sit next to a really nice person and subsequently I became quite a bit more relaxed. I arrived in Atlanta, GA around 7:45 and had the chance to speak with my parents, and friends Natalie and Chris. It was great to hear some familiar voices as well as words of encouragement from people that mean so much to me . However I found out at around 8:00 that my gate had been changed and I had to travel to the other side of the airport, so I got moving quickly and luckily still had time to grab a bite to eat. While sitting at TGI Fridays I noticed a girl who looked about my age with a similarly intense back pack in tow who was seated the next table down from me. She and I got to talking and again I felt much more comfortable. Kristin was about to begin travelling alone for three weeks in Florence, Italy – a feat I found extremely courageous and admirable – and had never been to Europe before. It was wonderful to speak to a fellow college student and adventurer (if I may use that term) who was down to earth and also a little nervous. I felt very happy, when we parted and wished each other a great trip, that we had both lifted each other’s spirits greatly.
And now here I am, sitting in 35 A and B (exceptionally lucky to have a free seat next to me) excited and anticipating what experiences the next four months will bring. Many people have told me that this experience will change my life and as the man sitting next to me on my first flight said so eloquently “For a person your age, travelling abroad will be one of the most eye-opening experiences of your life.” Though I have obviously not yet delved deeply into my semester abroad I already agree that I will be changed by this experience. Just within the past few hours I have let go and allowed myself to interact with random people I have met and I am recognizing just how interesting each individual truly is in their own right. I am extremely excited to begin what I hope will be an absolutely incredible experience and I within myself I have pledged to be as open minded as possible and to take in and learn as much as possible from each new experience.
As for the next eight hours, I’m going to work on passing the time and hopefully sleeping.
Until next time!


1 Response so far »

  1. 1

    Kathee McCormack said,

    Carra – you are the best and your blog is awesome. I will put together an email list – let me know if you have specific people to be included. Keep up the great entries! Love, Mom

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