After having just spent a year abroad, it’s wonderful to be back at Middlebury. I had an amazing year in South America—one semester in Montevideo, Uruguay, and another in Buenos Aires, Argentina. I had the opportunity to travel, my Spanish improved significantly, and I really took to the lifestyle there. While abroad, many of the other international students enjoyed a new routine: we ate dinner at 11pm, we were chronically late to everything, and we moved around the city like locals after a few months’ time. But after a year of “different,” I was looking forward to coming back to the familiarity of my best friends, the push of Middlebury academics, and the beauty of New England.
While some parts of Middlebury I knew I had missed—my friends, a reliable internet connection, and vegetarian options—I’ve realized that there were so many other aspects of living here that also make it a place where I love to be. I love walking to the Saturday Farmers’ Market and sampling cheeses, chatting with the orchard owners, and watching the little kids pet the farm animals. I look forward to the Thursday environmental studies colloquium lunches and all the fascinating speakers and topics. Class has never been more enjoyable than when my Natures’ Meanings course goes out to the organic garden to discuss that week’s readings under sunny skies. These are the things that “make Middlebury” and the reasons I’m already starting to fight the creeping feels of nostalgia that this is our senior year! I’m hoping the leaves take their time in falling off the trees and that the fall lasts as long as possible.