This past week, to be honest I’m not even sure where to begin so I guess I’ll start at the beginning it all started last Tuesday night when we got on a plane and headed to Poland to begin our four-day trip. This trip was planned by our own Maggie Palozola. She decided that It was a good idea for is to go to three countries in four days which in planning sounded like a great idea. We arrived in Poland at 11:45 and we got picked up and had about a 30-minute drive to our air B&B. We finally hit our beds at about 1am I believe and we had our alarms set for 6:30 the next morning so we could head to Auschwitz concentration camps.
Auschwitz was one of my “favorite” parts of the trip, while it was extremely heavy to take in, I think it was good to see what went on in person. Just sheer size of it was extremely crazy to me and really got across the devastation that went on during that time. I won’t go into detail now simply because I don’t think I need to but let’s just say it was the one of the heaviest things I have ever done in my life.
After Auschwitz, the rest of the day in Poland wasn’t much to be honest, we went to see some of the sites that we were told about which where fun but I mainly just remember being freezing cold the whole time, but that’s beside the point, at 9pm we board a bus. This bus wasn’t just any ordinary bus, no this bus I was about to be on for the next 7 hours, trapped in seats that weren’t comfortable and I was unable to get any sleep but the one bright spot was that at the end of it we were going to be in Berlin which was somewhere I always wanted to be.
Berlin, while it was freezing the whole time, was decent. We spent the day walking around Berlin and seeing all the sights to see. We saw the Berlin wall, Brandenburg Gate, and the Berlin Museum of Natural History just name a few. To be honest Berlin was probably my least favorite part of the four-day trip but it will still bring plenty of memories and if nothing else I will always remember playing cards on the bus ride to Berlin and beating Avery in Jen at approximately 3AM.
Our flight out of Berlin left at 9pm and we were leaving the for London where we would spend the next two days. London was the most “rest” I had and it was the first time in what felt like forever that I had a place to call home and a bed to call my own. I think we saw just about everything that comes to your mind when you think about London in the two days we were there. Heck we even, due to Alex Claus, went to a local massage place and five of us guys got massages.
The four-day trip outside of Ireland was full of memories and something I’ll never forget but as I am writing this it is Wednesday the 15th and we have been back in Ireland since Saturday night, we woke up Sunday morning to attend a local Catholic Mass which I will say got me out of my comfort zone it was something I needed to experience and was a worthwhile experience. On Monday, we spent the day learning about C.S Lewis. Since he was born here in Belfast there are a lot of things related to him here. Including the lamp post that inspired the lamp post in Narnia as well as a door knob that many believe was his first idea of Aslan.
Yesterday was valentine’s day and it’s a holiday that I never really celebrated but we did yesterday. In the afternoon, we went ice skating here in Belfast which was a lot of fun. I am proud to say that I never went down and spent the whole time one my feet floating around the rink. There weren’t many people falling very hard but we did have a couple of people who struggled to stay on their feet. Those shall remain unnamed for the sake of their reputation.
Last night was spent eating a well-made dinner, we also set up one long dinner table instead of the two separate tables we usually had setup. After dinner, some of the leaders decided that it would be a good idea to make us do speed dating. So, we spent probably the next 45 minutes to an hour rotating though all the girls and we had one question of conversation, different for every girl of course, but we had two minutes to go on a “date” with them. Speed dating is something I am proud to say I had never done before last night but I must admit I had a lot of fun.
This past week has been a week of my life I will never forget. I didn’t get much sleep nor was I warm very often but all the things I did and the sights I saw made both those things well worth it. As I write this we leave a week from tomorrow and that Is something that I don’t think has registered with me yet. The manor has become home to me and the people I am with my family. I have done life with these people for the last two and half weeks and it’s something I will treasure very much over the next week and miss very much when it is gone.