Jackie in Switzerland: Flashback to the 1920’s

The 1920’s party was AWESOME. The party took place on a giant boat that started in Lausanne before sailing around Lac Léman for a few hours. The party was called “Titanique Lémanic”, the theme was 1920’s/Gatsby, and I was so impressed with the atmosphere.

It was so fun to dress up for the night and go out for something special!

It was so fun to dress up for the night and go out for something special!

First of all, I am a total nerd and absolutely LOVE the 20’s (and The Great Gatsby) and so I was all over this party from the very beginning. I went shopping at consignment shops in the area with my friends to find anything to wear that would fit the theme. In the end, almost everyone at the party got really into the theme and it truly looked like a fabulous 1920’s party when we arrived.

I dressed up in 1920’s style, and my friend Maeve dressed up as a Titanic passenger… I wonder if the party organizers ever questioned having a party entitled “titanic” on a boat?

I dressed up in 1920’s style, and my friend Maeve dressed up as a Titanic passenger… I wonder if the party organizers ever questioned having a party entitled “titanic” on a boat?

The boat had a casino, a magician, and a dance floor. The decorations looked really extravagant and you could tell that everyone at the party was having an amazing time and that it was one of the last times that we would all be together. It obviously felt fabulous to be on a boat, in one of the prettiest countries in the world, dressed up like Daisy and Jay. But even more than the extravagance of the party, it was incredible to all get together at the very end of the semester and see how far we have all come.

The Jay to our Daisy.

The Jay to our Daisy.

I knew that this was the last time that I would see many of the friends I have made since the beginning of the semester and it made the experience even more magical. We still had our “wow this is real life” moments, but we also realized that this might be one of the last times we could stare in awe at the beauty of Switzerland all together. The boat gave us the best view I have ever seen of the Swiss Alps (and as you know, I have seen a lot) and the sun seemed to set just for us.

Exhibit A in the “wow this is real life” feeling.

Exhibit A in the “wow this is real life” feeling.

This was the first moment where I felt that the end was near. I will be leaving in less than a week and I feel like I have just started getting comfortable in Lausanne. I am realizing that while I post awesome pictures of my travels and I get to learn another language and meet simply amazing people, study abroad is not easy. Yes, in the beginning it was very hard to get used to the country, but now it is hard to imagine not living here. When I arrived, I expected to make a few friends from cool places and then to be okay in returning home.

Pancakes with my friends.

Pancakes with my friends.

I have been combating the feeling that time is slipping by organizing pancake breakfasts on my hall (and forcing everyone to come!) These are some of my close friends that I have made in my dorm, and they were all excited to try ‘American pancakes made by a real American’. Feel free to call me MasterChef.

I have been combating the feeling that time is slipping by organizing pancake breakfasts on my hall (and forcing everyone to come!) These are some of my close friends that I have made in my dorm, and they were all excited to try ‘American pancakes made by a real American’. Feel free to call me MasterChef.

I am finding that the hardest part will be saying goodbye to the people whom I have met here. I have not just found “friends for now” but rather friends for life and people who I will miss terribly. Whether it’s my Chef BFF Amanda who cooks me the most amazing dinners because I am awful in the kitchen, my French hall mate who regularly (and adorably) throws around the American slang that I teach him, or even my friend Ayumi who I will see at school at Richmond, I am realizing that I will not be able to see them on a regular basis and that I have grown so attached to my friends here that I do not know what I will do without them. The hardest part of studying abroad is creating this new comfort and this new home for yourself and then having to leave it as soon as it feels okay.

 As I get closer to the end, I have been taking more and more photos like this one, Lausanne is a gorgeous city!

As I get closer to the end, I have been taking more and more photos like this one, Lausanne is a gorgeous city!

I am unbelievably grateful for the fact that I have found my “people” here in Switzerland, unbelievably relieved that the majority of my work is over, and unbelievably excited for the next chapter. I feel all of these things at the same time, and the result is such a mix of emotions that I don’t even know what to feel anymore. While I knew that I would love my time abroad and that of course I would get comfortable here, I never thought that I would have such a hard time saying goodbye. That being said, I will be traveling around Europe for about a month after my semester officially ends, and so the adventure is not quite over yet.

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