Post-TWC adventures

Post-TWC adventures

While I am writing this, I am on a plane, back to Belgium. In a couple hours I'll be back on Belgian soil. Sigh, these four months have flown by.


After leaving the RAF (Residential and Academic Facility), my friend Marjolein and I took a bus to New York. It was time to give New York a second try. Last time our trip was overshadowed by the rain and the coldness.

After a four hour bus ride we arrived and quickly dropped our luggage at the hotel. And then, it was time to go on adventures. During our stay, we visited Soho, an area of New York that I thought was really pretty. We also visited the 9/11 memorial, walked around in Manhattan, visited the regular sites like the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building, and so on. This time the city had a bigger effect on me. It became more livable, and we saw some places that were far away from the touristic spots. Moreover Central Park is amazing in the sun. Yet, New York City will never be my favorite city. It's too loud, too busy, and it's hard to escape this rush. I'll never be able to live in New York City, yet it remains a great destination to visit.

What I liked most about my trip to New York City was that we already got to meet up with fellow TWCers that we had to say goodbye to only 3 days earlier. One last day and night of fun with the TWCers in the city that never sleeps.



Next day we took a bus to Boston. Boston turned out to be this great, amazing, awesome city that I actually didn't expect it to be. We visited all of the major touristic sites, and I loved Boston -- I loved everything about it. There is a big park in downtown Boston that is a great place to hang when it is nice out. We took the metro to Cambridge and walked around on the campus of Harvard. It's incredible to see how universities become complete villages, or even complete cities. It's definitely one of my favorite cities in the USA so far, and I can definitely see myself living here. Maybe, one day.




And then Marjolein and I split up. She went back to D.C. and I took a plane to Orlando, Florida, to have one last week of relaxation before going back home. One week of needed rest -- TWC and my trips had been exhausting, but so rewarding, that I could use a few consecutive nights in a row of more than five hours of sleep. I booked myself a hotel room in a great hotel (thank god for the great deal I got on that hotel) with a room and a poolside. Yet, I didn't get there without trouble. As cheap as I am, I booked the cheapest plane ticket I could find, and of course I had a layover of only 40 minutes. "It's okay, I can do that, it's 40 minutes... how hard can it be?" Well, I suppose it's not that hard, but I left Boston with a delay so big, that my connecting flight had already left before I even boarded my plane. Damn. Spending the night at JFK is not as fun as I imagined. I expected the most important airport in New York to be vibrant all day and night, but when I arrived it was deadly quiet. There I was, with my rebooked ticket for the next morning, $25 of food vouchers, and a Burger King that was already closed. Could it get any worse? Yes, there was literally nothing to do in the airport, I was freezing cold as all my warm clothes were in my suitcase. After all I was going to Orlando -- who needs warm clothes in Orlando?



In Orlando I basically did nothing but enjoy and relax. I slept in, woke up, went to the swimming pool and lay in the sun and worked on my tan while I was reading books, eating cookies, drinking coke. In the evening I ate either Chili's (yummy, delicious, unhealthy, delicious), Burger King or Pizza Hut (indeed, as healthy as it can get), and went for a walk, visited Downtown Disney or went back to the pool. Tanned, relaxed and well-rested I left for the airport. Back to D.C., and then back to Belgium. Back to the ordinary.



I had a great time in the States, and I had a great time during my last trip to New York City, Boston and Orlando. I can only advise everyone to take the opportunity to travel around after your stay at the RAF. Don't go home immediately; take the time to relax and to acclimate, preferably with some fellow TWCers. TWCers say goodbye in style, and so should you!


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