University of Birmingham, England
While I had quite a few memorable experiences during my semester abroad in England, I think that the most memorable for me was my solo weekend in Liverpool. I had booked a ticket to see The Libertines, one of my favorite bands, months in advance and decided to spend a few days exploring the historic city while I was there. Having traveled abroad a few times before and having navigated cities and attended concerts on my own, I felt confdent traveling alone, something that I would have never considered before the frst time I studied abroad. The trip from Birmingham to Liverpool was about four hours by train (my favorite way to travel) and we crossed through the amazing, fairy tale Welsh country.
When I arrived at my AirBnb that evening, I immediately made my way to the concert which, I will admit, was nerve-wracking. (The concert didn't exactly pull in the friendliest crowd. In the words of a security guard that I later befriended, “Concerts like these seem to summon the scum of the earth”.) Still, despite being crushed by a hoard of angry English rugby players, I managed to enjoy the concert as I was able to secure my place in the front row and even made a few friends in the process. There was even a surprise introduction made by Jeremy Corbin, which the crowd loved.
When the concert was over, I made my way back to my host house, only to fnd that my phone was about to die, all the taxis were booked because of the concert, and I was in a foreign city, alone, at night. While it was terrifying, a very kind taxi service understood the dangerous situation I was in and sent a car for me, which I am eternally grateful for. The next day, a bit bruised but happy nonetheless, I decided to take the bus across the Mersey to the city, where I bought tickets for the British Music Experience, an amazing museum dedicated to Liverpool Port the legendary musicians and artists of the UK, including David Bowie, The Cure, The Clash and The Sex Pistols.
From there, I stopped by every Beatles' related site, the Tate Modern, and several candy shops, before making my way back. I took the train back to Birmingham the next day, proud of myself for surviving the ups and downs of Liverpool and making a mental note to never use up my phone battery with a hundred pictures of Pete Doherty again.