"Definitely, travelling is never a bad experience, even in the worst circumstances you always learn something and make the best kind of memories that you find yourself telling 5 years later and laughing your heart out,” said Menna.
You definitely can imagine what are the worst circumstances that she is talking about!
Menna Ayman is a graduate student who decided to take a big step in her life. During Corona times, she decided to try a completely different Masters experience in Paris, France.
“I wanted to try a completely new experience and I love travelling so I thought it’s a good opportunity to get my master’s degree and have a good time at the same time,” said Ayman.
Menna is like every graduate who wished to travel after finishing their Bachelor Degree, but not all of them were encouraged and excited about this opportunity when Corona took place in our world.
“Corona has definitely turned my plans upside down, since I decided to travel before everything went downhill, particularly in France where lockdown has been declared 3 times and curfews never ended,” said Ayman.
France is one of the countries who suffered and is still suffering from Covid19. They reached a number of approximately 87k cases per day, they had several lockdowns and endless curfew rules.
Unfortunately, this situation turned everything into an online mood. Ayman mentioned that online classes are one of the worst things that happened in this journey beside the hardness of studying abroad which made concentration and motivation a big challenge.
“It was very hard at the beginning… with Covid and the closing of everything, a lot of people and myself felt very lonely and wanted to come back,” said Ayman.
Covid had a big effect on Ayman’s perception about her journey in France, especially that she is someone who loves travelling and adventures but she is also very dependent on her friends and family in a lot of things in her life, “so being completely on my own was definitely hard,” she said.
As every Egyptian who travels for a long time, Ayman misses everything about Egypt, her family, her friends and the comfort of her home.
She definitely faced challenges at the beginning of her journey. Finding an accommodation, rental apartments and studios in Paris were very expensive for students and landlords were not easy to handle.
But again the traveling experience compensates for this feeling!
“You can never fit in completely outside your country and people but living in a students’ residence has been the best decision I made, since no one is ever alone, I got to know a lot of great people which helped adapt,” said Ayman
This choice of living in a students’ residence helped Ayman to make the best of this education trip, she was able to make memories that she will forever cherish.
“Honestly I can’t limit the memories I made here to only one, but I have to say spontaneous and random trips are the best, it’s when you make the best memories with the silliness and the unplanned mishaps but they always turn out to be the most memorable ones,” said Ayman.
She is definitely happy about her experience and the challenges that helped her build a new perspective for life and she mentioned that she wouldn’t change anything about this year.
“My advice is to find people you’re comfortable with and surround yourself with them,” this was Ayman’s great lesson that she is giving to students who wish to do like her.
It is not easy to live abroad on your own, especially if it’s your first time but knowing new people and making friends will make it the best memory.