No Expectations

Hi all! I’m Connor Nolan, one of the students that have the honor of participating in Cultural Routes this summer.

To be completely honest, this experience is still kind of a mystery to me. We have no itinerary and have been told to come in with absolutely no expectations. This is scary. And yet, it’s one of the most exciting things I’ve ever gotten myself into. I have repeatedly heard the memories and experiences shared through stories from the CR alumni and Dr. Pitcock. I have been told that this experience will change my life. I have been told that this experience will cause the group going to become incredibly tight-knit. I have been told that this will not be Frog Camp, but rather something much more significant. I have been told many things and it is now that this multitude of things is bouncing around my head. With how busy the ends of semesters always are, I know CR will be here before I know it. I’m all in. Let’s do this.

For the city part of this blog post, I was assigned to write about Rome. This comes as a bit of a challenge because it is the absolute last city we get to experience before flying back to our respective hometowns. Right now, I’m focused on getting through the semester, getting to see high school friends the first week of summer, and beginning Cultural Routes in Berlin. Rome is about the furthest thing from my mind. It makes me sad thinking and writing about the end of the experience and I haven’t even gone on it yet. After asking a few CR alumni about their experiences in Rome, they all agreed on one thing: they didn’t want it to end. One had this to say:

“Rome is a city of realization. At this point, CR is reaching its near end and you begin to realize it. You begin to reflect on how quick the weeks have rolled on by and reminisce on the great memories that have occurred. You begin to want to make the most of every moment leading up to the end of it.”

This really drives home the point that Dr. P always makes about taking every day as it comes. This is the reason for not giving us the itinerary. This is the reason for going in with no expectations. This is the CR mentality. I feel as though Rome will be a city of reflection. Both its deep culture and history and the fact that it is the final destination on the experience will combine to bring about contemplation of knowledge and insight gained during the course of the experience. We will all be taking it in together and I can’t imagine a better finale to what is sure to be an incredible experience.

Until next time,

Connor Nolan

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