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Pre-departure to London!!!

By London

Wow, the day is finally here!! The countdown is over, and I am ready for a new adventure! I must say this last couple of days between packing and finals were a little stressful, but I couldn’t be happier to be going to London.

Now, where should I start? I should probably start off by telling you that my itinerary is different than the rest of the group because I am going to China in Spring 2015 for FIU’s Marriott Tianjin China Program and, when it is time to leave for China, I will be staying with my sister in Spain.  So, as you can probably imagine, I had to pack for months instead of days! I could barely see the floor of my room with all the clothes and other stuff I am taking! I ended up packing 3 bags!! Well, I hope I use everything I am taking, but for now, only time will tell.

I’ll tell you a little about my trip and how I prepared for everything. Since London is really cold I have been checking the temperatures and weather for several days in order to have a more clear idea of what I should take. Obviously, due to the cold, thermal clothes as well as gloves, scarves and hats where the first thing I considered, but after that I wasn’t sure of what type of clothes I should bring with me apart from my business attire for two site visits… Honestly, it was a huge help that Dawn and Professor Kitterlin sent us a detailed plan of activities, for it gave me a clear idea of what clothes to take. Now, getting my bag ready was really stressful.  I am terrible at packing, and I had to check my bag constantly, for I kept thinking that I was leaving something behind.  It was also hard since I kept mixing the clothes for both trips, and I will NOT take all these bags to London — I am not that crazy!  🙂

This brings me to talk to you about my travel plans. As I am writing this blog, I am currently in Spain. I left on the 12th for Madrid where I plan on leaving my bags with my sister while I go to London. So, my trips for the next couple of months will be  Miami-Madrid, Madrid- London, London-Madrid, and so on until I leave for China and go back home. I feel like I will be spending a really long time in airports and airplanes; I can already feel the stress of having to go through security and the long flight hours piling up. Oh well, at least I know it will be worth it.  After all, we will have the  opportunity to visit so many places and learn so much about both the culture in London as well as the hospitality industry — it is an experience I just can’t miss.

My trip from Miami to Madrid was very emotional for me since I won’t be seeing my parents for many months.  Saying goodbye to my mom at the airport almost had me in tears.  Apart from the sadness you always experience when saying goodbye to someone, I couldn’t help but feel excited.  After all, I kept thinking that I was not only going to be able to see my sister, but after 10 long years I am finally going back to London.  Now add to that the obvious stress of having to fly so many hours, and you can picture the emotional roller coaster this day has been for me.

Later on today I will be taking a flight to meet up with the rest of the group. London here I go! Let the adventure begin!!

59 days until we leave for London!

By London

This blog will be dedicated to the adventures of the FIU Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management students who are participating in a 10-day study abroad program with Dr. Miranda Kitterlin to London this Winter 2014 session. The students will be taking part in various tourist activities and conducting site visits in different aspects of the hospitality management industry. See our tentative itinerary at http://hospitality.fiu.edu/london. We leave December 13, so stay tuned for updates from our students…

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