The Brave Coward

February 6, 2008 § Leave a comment

I just got back from a weekend in Paris, and traveling always gives me too much time to think. These thoughts, which spontaneously appeared on trains, planes, and buses have started to form a cohesive thought, which is this: Moving to England was both the bravest and most cowardly thing I have ever done.

I was afraid that after graduation, all of my friends would go off to do exciting things and leave me behind. I moved to England because I wanted to leave them behind before they could leave me.

I have never adjusted quickly to new situations, and moving to a foreign country, alone, definitely falls under that category. I came knowing I would have to deal with homesickness and loneliness.

I applied to this MA program because I knew I would get in. I was too unsure of myself, and lazy, to apply anywhere else.

I have an irrational fear of getting lost on public transportation, especially buses and subways. I came to England knowing I would have to not only face my fear, but I would be doing it alone, in foreign countries, and often in a different language.

I decided to continue with grad school partly because I didn’t think I was capable of working at a real, adult, job.

I came in to my program confident that I could succeed as an American, even though I was totally unprepared for the significant stylistic differences between American and British education.

I came because my father thought it was a good idea.

I came even though my mother thought it was a bad idea.

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