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Wanderlust

Growing up I've been both lucky and unlucky with my opportunities to explore the world outside of my house. Family holidays to France every year grounded my ability to travel long distances (we drove), my grandmother being German and auntie living in Germany solidified my love for the country and desire to learn the language, and my love of reading allowed me to travel from the safety of my bedroom.

I honestly believe one of the main reasons that my wanderlust hasn't really kicked in until now is because my imagination was enough. And to this very day it still is - just about. Earlier this year I interned in London and that was a bit of an adventure for me (Yorkshire born and bred!). Even going 82 miles down south to University was a big deal. I can still recall the butterflies in my stomach as I walked up the stairs to my new flat on move-in day. Reading has given me a sense of adventure, and also allowed me to get an appetite to explore.

Because I was ill for most of sixth form I didn't work. Consequently, I also didn't work so had no income. This, obviously, meant I couldn't travel as most 18 year olds from my school did. Being from somewhere relatively affluent means that people traveled; my own sister is about to embark on an albeit short interrailing trip to Amsterdam and Paris because she's been able to work and earn the money to do so. She also traveled to New York City earlier this year with school. Her wanderlust has always been larger than mine, and now at 20 years old I am beginning to get a hunger to travel.

Germany is on the end of the thread, tugging me towards it. I studied the language until A level and when I last visited in 2011, I fell in love with the place. I feel such a tie to the country due to my Gran growing up there and I want to know more. I want to first of all, become fluent in the language. To the point where I can live there (which at some point I would like to do!). I want to experience the diverse landscapes that smatter it - I want to see where my Gran grew up.

I'm currently trying to improve my German by reading Tintenherz by Cornelia Funke. I read Inkheart when I was young and it was one of my favourite book series, so it's lovely to come back to it again and attempt it in it's original language. It's slow going (only on page 70!) but fun. This October or November I plan on flying to Bonn, then making my way south, then up to Berlin and finally to Hamburg. Three of those places I'd like to visit people - family and my close friends - studying, living, working there. Passing the time. My great-aunt Ruth lives in Hamburg and I only met her when I was very little. I've managed to communicate with her in later years via letter writing in German. It would be a privilege to meet her and take her to lunch.

At the heart of this all, I feel like going to Germany is a bit of a pilgrimage for me, as it were. I feel like it's such an important part of my identity and something I'd really like to do. Now that I've had my surgery (hurrah!) and I've got a job (interning - huzzah!), I can hopefully venture there in my reading week first term of third year.

I've got a taste for travel, and I need to quench it.

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