About

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I’m Alex, a senior English major at a small liberal arts college in the heart of Pennsylvania. My passions include personal writing, reading, dancing, traveling, and most recently, British culture. Yes, I am a self-declared anglophile: my weaknesses are a good cuppa and a plate full of Hobnobs.

I always had a love for anything and everything British, but I did not become a full-blown, self-acknowledged anglophile until I studied abroad in England.  Last year, I was accepted into my college’s year-long humanities study abroad program at the University of East Anglia in Norwich, England. In early September 2013, I boarded a flight bound for London Heathrow Airport, and left the United States for the first time in my life. I was an excited, yet also slightly nervous, twenty year old, about to embark on the journey of a lifetime.

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London: the most magical place in the world.

I did not realize that my year abroad would completely and irreversibly change my life. When you fall in love, it can be difficult to put into words how or why you feel that way. You know that you are so extraordinarily happy, and feel a sense of completeness, but you are so present in that time of pure bliss that you don’t necessarily know how to convey it. That was how I felt in England: stable, safe, and entirely enamored with the beauty of such a magnificent country, culture, and heritage.

But now, my dream year has ended, my UK visa has expired, and I am once again stranded in rural Carlisle, PA. A massive piece of my heart still remains in England.  I now muse over the days of cheesy chips, people responding with “cheers” when I held the door open for them, strolls through the English countryside, seeing my friends and flatmates every day…

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Adventures at Windsor Castle, November 2013

Regretfully, I did not start a study abroad blog when I was in England; I was so present in my blissful day-to-day experiences, I didn’t feel like I was able to write comprehensive reflections about them.  Now, after several months time, I have decided that I want to encapsulate my memories in this blog: “Mind the Gap: An Anglophile in Carlisle.”

I intend to use this blog to grapple with my deep yearning to return to my favourite place in the world – England – and to attempt to cope with the pain of being ripped away from my second home.  I will also use this blog to discuss differences between American and British culture, and to preserve the memories I have of the defining year of my life.

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Norwich Cathedral, January 2014

 

One thought on “About

  1. Cheers! I hope you can find a settling feeling regarding Britain… I felt the same way when I visited my family in Los Angeles (I was from Hong Kong) and that wrenching feeling that their lives are going on the same as you’re ripped from theirs, back to your home country… indescribable. I see something beautiful coming out of your yearning, and can’t wait to see more!

    Liked by 1 person

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