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I am very excited to learn about all of the culture and history on the Greece study abroad trip. One of the things I am really excited to see is the story of Greece. Greek culture dates back over thousands of years. From the little known Mycenaean Greek era to the current modern era, there’s so many connections. We are visiting a lot of museums on this trip so a lot of the history of the country will be covered. One of the new trends is Greek tourism is the focus and rise in familiarity with the mythology. Thanks to some popular media coverage,  books and  television shows over the past 2 decades, the average person is becoming more and more familiar with ancient Greece. I am excited to see how these new Greek tourism hot spots are dealing with the increase in the demand in tourism. I am also very curious to learn how Greece adapts to different dietary needs that tourists bring. Being a pescatarian, I will get to experience this first hand. I know Greek is famous for its lamb and gyro, but it also has many dishes that do not require any meat at all, such as a Greek salad or spinach pie. I also am excited to try the Mediterranean sea food. With Greece being a peninsula so close to the water, and having many different islands, fish and seafood is engrained in their culture. This makes me look forward to trying all the different dishes Greece has to offer. As a member of the Wine Guild at FIU, I am also excited to try Greek wine. Terroir is a key component of any wine, and even the shipping process can affect a bottle, so being able to taste wine right at the winery will give me a new sense of appreciation for the place that it was made. The final food related thing I am looking forward to is learning how to make feta cheese. I worked with dairy cattle and farmers from kindergarten until eight grade, and with goats from seventh grade to when I graduated high school. I was the top dairy jeopardy youth division contestant in the state of New Jersey in 2016, and was in the top 12 nationally the same year. The dairy industry was a big part of my upbringing. Getting to see a different side of the dairy industry, using goat milk and primarily focused on cheese making, is going to be an eye opening experience.

I packed all FIU shirts for this trip. I wanted to represent FIU. I think it is important to always remind yourself why you are where you are and who gave you this opportunity. It forces me to hold myself to a standard befitting the university I love. I also just have a lot of FIU shirts. I made sure to pack a portable charger for longer trips, headphones. Some things I forgot to pack was an outlet adaptor, hairbrush, and sunscreen.

Before this trip, I am going to London for the day. It was cheaper to get flights into and out of London than fly a more direct route. It also gives me time to explore London which I would have done on the London Study Abroad before it was cancled. It will also let me visit some of my friend who live in the area.

Overall I am very excited to take this trip. Greece is a hot spot for tourists and has such a long and unique culture.

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