Erin's Quotes: Jackie's Quotes:

"I think through most of the day it feels like just forever ago but then it’s just so funny how I’m suddenly there and I feel like I’m breathing the air there. The experience was just so magnified and so intense that it’s just some things about it make me feel like I have a photographic memory."

"You are a different person because of the experience and because of the things you’ve seen. My uncle asked me what did I learn, but the more appropriate question is what did I not learn?"

"My first few weeks back there was a lot of crying. I was annoyed by things that would happen here."

"You assimilate the experience more into your life here as time passes. And its not just taking things at face value. It’s more looking for the symbolism behind the experiences and what you can learn from them."

"You can’t really prepare for culture shock. It’s a natural transition."

"We were living in a huge city and we felt safe out at night and Gainesville is not as safe. It was strange having to drive again."

"A part of me would rather be here and be consumed with the culture here and what I have to do here and do it well and then next summer or whenever the time comes, I’ll go back to Prague and I’ll be fully there.

I just think it’s sort of hard to walk that line. I totally incorporate Prague into my life and the memories. I think it can be painful to try to recreate it. My best way to have balance is to do the extremes."

"Our first maybe 2 or 3 weeks back were miserable and depressing and then somehow time just had a way of healing. There wasn’t anything that I did. There wasn’t anything that anyone said to me. I just woke up one day feeling a little bit better. You become really humbled by the experience of what you had and I think to be looking to recreate it in your everyday life is unrealistic."

"I was in a store and I saw this quote and it said “Home is the place where your life begins” Prague was home. Prague is always going to be home. It was my time to create my life. It was everything that I wanted it to be. It was a selfish experience. It was where I wanted to be, it was what I wanted to be doing and to me it was the ideal perfect home. I’m always going to be carrying the notion of Prague as my home."

"Studying abroad changes your perspective of what you want. When you get home you’ll be able to tell a difference between those who have traveled and those who haven’t."

"I found that my values changed after I came back. Before leaving for Prague getting a new car was important to me and after I got back materialism was out the window."

"I think when you’re first coming back and you want to show everything and tell every story, you may find that the level of interest you had anticipated or hoped for isn’t there.

What it boils down to is no one cares as much as you do and you shouldn’t expect them to because it was your experience and not theirs.I think that as soon as you accept that, I think it’s okay."

"I’m thankful for having had the experience. It’s better to have had it and to feel the pain of having to have lost it then to never have experienced it. I just feel like I can’t experience it again here. I know that I can’t go back."