Financial Mistakes I Have Made This Summer...

This does not include the other mistakes I've made this summer. I don't want to completely depress myself. Just guilt myself into feeling like a horrible person for putting financial strain not only on myself, but also my family, who didn't have to do the things they've done for me in my last few weeks away but did anyway because they're amazing people. So, here is Alli criticizing herself:
  1. Deciding to be away the entire summer with no chance for a job to make at least some cash.
  2. Not applying for more study abroad scholarships for more money.
  3. Trying to make too many detour trips (or making any at all).
  4. Going out almost every night with the lovely people I met during Round 1 at Goethe Institut.
  5. Going back-and-forth between Berlin and Bamberg one too many times.
  6. Not investigating enough for train/plane tickets, which led to wasting money.
  7. Buying cheap tickets = NO REFUND when you need to change your plans.
  8. Not checking that my USDollar check completely covered my Goethe tuition IN THE BEGINNING of my courses.
  9. Not saving the *at least* 70euro proficiency test for Goethe Institut ahead of time.
  10. Spending too much already for Round 2 at Goethe Institut.
  11. Thinking I could actually SAVE money while away.
Never again will I plan for a summer trip lasting more than 5 weeks.
Never again will I take out a loan for summer study travel.
Never again will I go one summer without a job.
Never again will I miss our family vacation.
Never again will I attempt to visit more than two countries/4 cities for an extended period of time.

In case you haven't noticed, despite the tremendous amount of memories, experiences, and friendships I've made this summer, I feel the absolute worst, lowest, dumbest I've felt this entire summer and it was bound to happen sooner or later. I hate money and I'm sick and tired of always needing needing needing money for everything. I just want this all to end and I want to be home, where I'm used to everything. Though I may be overreacting about all of this because I'm PMSing...

Today in class we discussed "Heimat"...home. It made me want to cry. "Was bedeutet Heimat für dich?" My family and closest friends. Wherever they are, that is my home: vacation, Lycoming; any country, city, building - only when I'm with them am I home. When I was in Israel with Heather, Lesley, Marcella, Kristina, I was home because I was with people I know and love. When I was in Bamberg with Kat and her family and then with Eric, I was home because I know them and love them. When I was in Madrid and Berlin with Stuart, I was home because I had my boyfriend, whom I love. I have fun with these people and I can talk with these people about whatever. When I am with them, I feel safe and relaxed and I can easily have fun, even if things aren't so great. And that is what I need right now. I can't completely open up to people whom I've only known 2 weeks.

I'll be happy next weekend when a few of my friends from Goethe Round 1 come around because we all became very close in a very short period of time and I know we'll have fun without spending any more money if I let them know I don't have enough to spend. And then it'll only be 5 days until I'm home.

I hate letting stupid money get to me like this. It wouldn't if I were home because I'd feel safe. I mean, Berlin is one of the safest cities in Europe, so I'm not worried. But I'm so far away. That's why I don't feel secure. This time in two weeks I'll be so close to being home (it's 2:15pm in PA right now) and once I transfer onto that transatlantic flight from London Heathrow airport, I'll feel tremendously better. Once the plane lands in Newark airport, I'll be so excited that I'm home. Once I get through customs and see my parents at the terminal exit, I'll be jumping for joy. Once the car pulls down our driveway and parks in front of the house, I'll be so relieved. Then I get 48 hours to enjoy my first home with my real family before going to my second home and being with one of my other families.

I've learned a lot about myself and a lot about life throughout this trip and I wouldn't trade it for anything, not even the money.

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