Break over. Classes again.

Got back on campus on Saturday evening.

This fall break is hands down the best, best school break ever.

So like the first few days of any normal break, people are always asking, “So how was your break?” It is like, an obligatory question if you’re seeing someone for the first time after break.

My group with whom I went on the Amish trip, they anticipated this. They knew people were going to be asking this question really often, and we all echoed the same sentiment — there’s no way we can summarize our trip in a few sentences.

Our stay with the Amish was nothing like we expected it to be. On the last day, when we were leaving, people started crying. Some of the Amish were crying too.

I really, really feel like declaring in large, bright red font how absolutely AWESOME our experience was, but I feel like it just sounds very clichéd and trite. It’s like what a person would do if they went on a regular holiday and want everyone to think they had tons of fun. It’s what I would say after a week of sightseeing and I want to tell people about it.

This experience was different. It wasn’t all about fun. It was about people. We actually felt like we were part of a huge family. And, at the risk of sounding very clichéd again, it made us reexamine our lives and reconsider what we accept to be the “right” way to live and do things.

For example, when we first heard how the Amish run their schools, we were quite skeptical. I couldn’t understand why in the world they would choose to have schools this way, and I imagined classes to be quite a disaster. Plus, Amish only go to school till 8th grade (14 years old), so they can’t be super smart, can they? It wasn’t until we taught in their schools that I realized their teaching and learning process is actually much, MUCH more effective than ours. And a lot of the Amish we met are incredibly smart people, they just don’t choose to go to school after 8th grade, and for many reasons that make a lot of sense after you hear them talk about them.

Anyhow. It was one of the best experiences of my life, hands down. I’d go so far as to say, my week with the Amish trumps my month in Europe. I know the trip was special when almost everyone in the group started keeping a journal so they wouldn’t forget the things we did and the people we met. Even people who never intended to keep journals borrowed paper from others to write on.

I met some people in my group during class today, and we all agreed that being back on campus takes some getting used to. It’s because all week, every single person we’ve interacted with, other than each other, had been Amish. Now we’re back here and have to pick up our college student identity again. One girl said that she already misses our Amish friends, and the other 3 of us nodded in agreement.

I would definitely write more about my trip later, because I am really, really excited to share with everyone what happened and what I took back from the experience. But for now, I have to work on a shit ton of homework because I had only one day, Sunday, to work on them.

So stay tuned kay!

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