Written by SU Strasbourg student Charlotte Stone.
For most American students, these two words–Spring Break– evoke anything and everything having to do with tacky resorts and even tackier bathing suits. For most students studying abroad here in Strasbourg, France “Spring Break” encapsulates an entirely different and exciting universe: Munich, Milan, Geneva, London, Athens, Seville, and more, all at our fingertips as a break from winter nights in with the books.
This Spring Break 2010, Strasbourg students explored the corners of Europe and Northern Africa.
Catherine, a junior History major from Johns Hopkins University, began her week in Munich, Germany at the BMW museum. Catherine found warmth from the winter chill relishing in her dreams of owning her own German trophy someday. From here, Catherine and her friends ventured to Milan, Italy, which to their surprise proved not to be a “touristy city.” With their luck, they managed to eat the “best meal” of the trip-an utterly impossible question to answer- focaccia with luscious tomato sauce, artichoke hearts, and olive oil. Catherine finished her trip with some wanderings in Geneva, Switzerland that ended with the purchasing of massive quantities of divine, gourmet chocolate to hold her over ‘till she returned to her local pastry shop back home in Strasbourg.
Laura, a Public Service major at University of Pittsburg, took her maps and travel books off to Greece for her spring break visits to Athens and Delphi. In addition to her travels to the ancient ruins and other museums, Laura found some interesting cultural quirks in her various hostels and hotels. At the end of a long day of walking through the Parthenon, the Acropolis, or local eateries, Laura enjoyed relaxation time in her own room fit with a crystal library, a fake tiger fur at the foot of her bed, and the two lighting options: dimmed or bluelight. Lucky for Laura, she never felt far from home–instead of automatically switching to English, local Grecians switched to French for clarification. Though, upon arriving back in Strasbourg it was a relief to sleep in her own bed -–without the tiger fur at her feet.
Another student decided to take an alternative mode of transportation for his visits from city to city: rent a car! “The cheaper alternative,” renting a car whisked Doug, a junior Philosophy major at Kenyon College, across the south of Spain. Doug and his friends savored in the luxury of stopping in little towns at their leisure while passing along the Spanish countryside. From Grenada to Seville and ending in Madrid, Doug’s adventures brought many car sing-al-longs that rivaled the euphoria of their last-night’s sea food feast in Madrid.
Danielle, a Syracuse University Television, Film, and Radio major, channeled her inner free spirit with her exploration “à pied” through the Dordogne Valley. Meeting an old friend as a travel companion, the two hiked throughout the region meeting locals and seeing the natural beauty of their host country. Straying away from the big cities, Danielle enjoyed her freedom on foot, eating from various local markets, and pinching-pennies.
The Monday morning after break came with a slew of exciting stories of foreign cities, exhilarating life experiences, tales of new friends from afar, and a revolutionary understanding of what it truly means to experience “Spring Break.”