A City Between Two Lakes

As May 14th, the day we leave for an experience of a lifetime, quickly approaches, my excitement grows exponentially.  I cannot believe that in only 36 days I will be stepping onto a plane and beginning this unbelievable adventure throughout Europe with 15 other friends, who will soon become familia.

I am ready to be all in 24/7.  I am committed to being fully present in every moment.  I am anticipating exploration in each unique European city.  I am prepared to reflect upon my experiences in order to turn them into long lasting memories.  Most of all, I am eager to form deep connections with each of my friends that I will be traveling with.  I am not talking about short lived friendships that do not persist beyond Cultural Routes. Instead, I am talking about the type of relationships where people feel open enough to be vulnerable with each other, comfortable enough to appreciate the silence, and lighthearted enough to laugh uncontrollably.  Discovering friendship like this is why I am so incredibly excited for CR11.

This is what Cultural Routes is all about.

As we explore Europe, the bonds between our familia will only grow stronger, and I predict that Interlaken will be the city where we will make great strides in this camaraderie.  Interlaken will be a city where we will face fears as we skydive over the stunning terrain, pursue adventure as we hike up the Swiss Alps, and admire its utter beauty as we discover everything Interlaken has to offer.  By engaging in these activities together and trusting one another, our bonds will only be strengthened.

Because we will be exploring Interlaken about halfway through our time in Europe, we will have reached a point in our friendship where we will all be comfortable being ourselves around each other.  Many shared memories from Berlin and Munich will be behind us, while countless new memories to be made lie ahead of us in Riomaggiore, Florence, and Rome. Hopefully, by Interlaken, we will all be committed to being fully present in every moment that lies ahead and cherishing the time we have left together on Cultural Routes.

Just as Interlaken is nestled between the gorgeous Lake Thun and Lake Brienz, I am nestled between a memorable past and a future full of opportunity. As I am living in the present, I often find myself spending my time reminiscing on the past or pondering my future, and not living fully in the present.  Interlaken, a city not to be overlooked, and the people I will be exploring it with will serve me as a reminder to be fully engaged in the now, and to always live in the present.

Stay tuned,

Lauren Klingemann

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