The Final Week

I knew it was coming, but didn’t think it would be this soon. As the course winds down, we are only visiting three places this week, and of those three, two are the same. The two posts about them will come by the end of the week, and I want to take the time now to summarize my experience of the trip. And what a trip it has been.

It feels like both yesterday and last month I stepped out of the train station and ran into a bombed out cathedral in a town I’ve never been to before. Since then I’ve settled into my room at the university, met great people, traveled around England, Wales, Scotland, and learned so much about architecture and even a little more about myself. The first week was spent getting to know people, getting into a routine, and figuring out all the store hours of places you can buy food. Luckily there is a Tesco a 5 minute walk away that is open 24hrs. Then just as things start to get normal, I pack up and go to Edinburgh with someone I just met that week. The weekend trip was great, but something odd happened when I came back, and happened again getting back from Wales. Getting back to Coventry felt like getting home after a trip away rather than arriving back at your hotel after a day trip. It could be the feeling of getting back to school, something that is familiar, or getting back to what simply has become the status quo. Walking around Coventry now I know which way is which, where all the landmarks are, what bars to go to, what ones not to go to.

As far as the course is concerned, it is the best one ever. Travelling around England with the best professor ever talking about a thing you love is something that doesn’t happen in a class room no matter how entertaining the lecture is. One thing this course teaches you that can’t be taught in a class room is perspective. In a lecture you look at pictures and listen to what the speaker has to say and draw your thoughts and conclusions from that. Just like I have been doing by writing this. But going and looking on your own with the background of information and informal lectures about specific parts that you can see give you the chance to experience and feel the building. You look at something 20 different ways and draw 40 different conclusions. For example my visit to Plas Mawr. I studied the house in a course this past semester. As I was walking around the house the lecture was playing in my head and I could place everything and understand better the reason for everything. This perspective of being in the location adds meaning and understanding of what you are looking at.

Another form of perspective that is taught is a more personal one. If you told me a few years ago I would travel by myself for three weeks going to foreign places, apart from not speaking, I wouldn’t have believed it. But now I’m here and want to stay for another three weeks. But yes mom, I am coming home as planned.

The next two posts will be out soon and are about some very nice, and in one (or two) case(s) very well know from a certain movie franchise.

Till then, here are some more cows.


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