10 things that will happen to you when you move to Europe

1 | You will walk the city your first weekend with only a folded map and sharp-edged nail file. And you will be ok.

2 | You will blow a fuse in your room after buying an outlet adapter, not a converter. And you will be ok.
      (You will also say a quick prayer before you dare to try and plug in your mac, and then learn that the awkward white box  you always complained about is a built-in converter.)

3 | You will not be able to comprehend that you are in Europe, short distances from the some of the most amazing places in the world and countries you've only heard about.  You will look up at piece of architecture, look down at your feet inside shoes bought at a T.J. Maxx in North Carolina, and you will not be able to make the connection.

4 | You will totally and completely give up the little gluten-free two-step you were attempting back home, and you will not feel guilty about it at all.

5 | You will grow a tough skin - literally - on your feet, after the blisters.

6 | You won't know what you're doing, and you'll look silly. And you will be ok.

7 | You will meet other expats/interns and then notice that after an hour of talking and walking, you somehow feel like they are the best friend you ever had.  And it will happen over and over. 

8 | You will get over many paranoid tendencies that were deeply implanted by the movie Taken. And you'll stop boiling your drinking water after the first week. And you will be ok.

9 | You won't be able to understand 99% of conversations around you on the Metro, and you'll actually love it. You'll start to really enjoy being alone with your own thoughts. But you'll also plan to sign up for an evening french class after work. You'll also cry on the way to work reading Wild when the main character has to put down her deceased mother's show horse.

10 | You'll have more Julie Andrews songs stuck in your head on a daily basis than you ever thought possible.  "I have confidence in confidence alone" will repeat when you're walking though a maybe dodgy area, and "Feed the Birds" every time you pass by the cathedral, because who knew birds actually do gather around those large structures? (And by the way, she's actually saying "tuppence a bag", as in buy a bag of bread crumbs for the birds for 'two-pence' each.  It'll save you a google search.

Lauren sees Europe

An amazing opportunity has presented itself, and here I find myself in the second week of a year long adventure in Belgium! I would have never guessed my life would include living and working in Europe, but I'm ecstatic that I've been allotted something this cool as part of my story.  This year I'll be sharing my first experiences living abroad, while not speaking the language at all, and learning as I go. Here's to a year in Europe!