It has been a month now since I departed from Germany, even though it only seems like yesterday, I really do miss Germany, my host family, friends and the way of life in general. On my flight from Bremen to Dublin it gave me time to reflect back on my trip, people I met, places I saw and it was at that moment that I realized how lucky I really was to have got the chance to experience a life so different at such a young age.
Settling back in at home was not hard at all, in fact it was like I never left, it was a novelty to be back and of course seeing my family again was above all the best. It was great to be back at school too, seeing my friends and telling countless stories from Germany which I was only to happy to tell as they reminded me of encounters I had forgotten about.
The novelty of being back at school lasted about an hour until I was wishing I was back in Germany. It made me understand that you don't know what you've got until its gone and what you've experienced until its over. If the missed memories have taught me anything it is live in the moment. I spent a lot of time thinking about Germany, especially during the Christmas holidays but yet I was still glad to be home.
I have kept in regular contact with my host family since I have come home at least once a week via e-mail, letter or by phone and I find it quiet pleasant to keep in touch. I have also kept In contact with students from my class through Myspace and I even received a Christmas card from my class, who also sent my school year book with it which was especially thoughtful.
One of my best friends in Germany with whom I traveled to Berlin with, and who hosted a going away party for me has said, that he will come to Ireland in the summer and I will then fly back to Germany with him for a holiday which I am really looking forward to, so the experience is not over yet and I do not think it will be for many years to come.
Overall I look back on my trip to Germany with fond memories and I see it as character building, I think and hope that it has changed me for the better not only with my language skills but on the perspective it gives me on everyday things.
I know I probably over use the term but it was truly once in a lifetime, and it is something I will carry through my life as being the best two months I have ever had!