August 30, 2017

I can feel the excitement rise.

My name is Hannah and I am originally from Santa Cruz California. I have only left the state a handful of times and only recently left the country for the first time last year. During my senior year of high school I felt underwhelmed at the thought of college and felt burnt out. The thought of a gap year didn’t even dawn on me and I had never thought much of it. Now  I am taking a gap year to sail from Maine to Cuba. The journey will be long but I have full faith that I will thoroughly enjoy it. I chose to take a gap year for the simplistic reason of clarity. I believe that in travel it is easy to find the things that matter in life because of our heavily distracting atmosphere. By this I mean it is hard to not only remain grateful, but aware of our lives with the materialistic distractions. I hope to achieve learning more about my character by exposing myself to a new and different environment with new challenges.

Along with the desire to expand my knowledge of myself comes an overwhelming sense of intimidation. I have a little over a week before I depart on my journey and I've never experienced anything like this in my life. An old friend once taught me to face my fears especially my biggest one of the unknown. The concept is to keep an optimistic outlook on everything, even things that scare me, channeling the fear into confidence. This has never come easy so that in of itself is one of the biggest challenges I will face. No amount of preparation can calm my nerves yet nevertheless I can feel the excitement rise.

Hannah, a 2017-2018 gap year student and aspiring travel writer, will be contributing to our blog throughout this year. As she shares her personal experiences with us all, we hope and suspect that it will resonate with many of you past, present and future gap year students. Thanks Hannah, and Buen Viaje!

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