Written by Kelsey V. January 6, 2015

I’m two weeks out from my first trip to Europe. Or 16 days, according to the countdown on my iPhone. Needless to say I am a little excited. Okay, a little is an understatement. I am stoked to begin this journey.

When I arrived back at school this past semester, I had an itch. I couldn’t quite tell what it was that I was craving. I knew I needed a change of scenery, a change of pace. It was months before I could finally put a word to this feeling- wanderlust.

I think the first half of the word says it all- wander. According to Merriam Webster, to wander is “to move about without a fixed course, aim, or goal.” Now, before you get the wrong idea I do have goals for my upcoming semester in Italy. I want to learn more about myself and become a stronger leader through the LIFE and LEAP programs that CIMBA offers. I want to make lifelong friends. But more importantly, I want to wander.

My life is a series of plans. I am used to having a control on most things. Some would even call me predictable. Spontaneity is minimal. So my most important goal for the upcoming semester is to learn how to let go- to wander. I want to be utterly immersed in the Italian culture in Paderno and make the most of every minute. I want to open my eyes to new people, new experiences. I want to say yes to adventure and to this life-changing experience that I have been blessed with.

I can’t wait to keep you all updated on my trip through my blogs. In addition to blogging, a few thoughtful friends of mine from home have given me travel journals and encouraged me to write down some thoughts in ink. The covers of the journals remind me to “find joy in the journey” and “make your own mark”. Here’s to wanderlust, and letting go.