France: Of Delights and Delayed Flights

Submitted by Althea Suniga on the 2019 spring semester program in Rome, Italy…

I was never one to believe the theory that, “Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong.” But study abroad never fails to deliver, and decides to change my mind. Nice, France has always been a dream destination of mine since it grabbed my attention on Pinterest with its miles of coastline highlighting the French Riviera, stone beaches, docks stocked full of boats, and my beloved crème brûlée. But upon arriving to our Airbnb infested with ants, a wrench was thrown into our weekend of leisure and relaxation. Three girls hoping to just eat bottomless pastries had to find an immediate solution – and none of those involved using an ant-infested bathroom.

Crouched on our phones for three hours trying to find a new hotel that will not break the bank and at the same time trying to get a full refund on the unused Airbnb, the beginning of our trip tested our patience. Over baked Camembert and French bread, we found a hotel that would finally house us without having to dig deeper into our coin purses and we finally began our trip the way it was supposed to. All was fine until it was time to finally return to Rome. On a Sunday, as we looked out at sunny Nice, we were stuck in the airport for three hours due to a delayed flight. Of course, a delayed flight, when we have chores and work awaiting us at home.

Safe to say everything that could have gone wrong, most definitely did, but I guess that’s part of the experience of traveling. I was lucky that I was with two of my friends who were calm and collected and just rolled with the punches. This weekend trip though, has taught me that things will never go as planned. Despite specific planning and set plans, there will always be something to try and ruin the experience. But in spite of all things, the people you are with and the city you are exploring can ease all worries, making all the difficulties in the end, worth it. It’s always worth it.