The Journies Journal: Excerpts from Travels Abroad

Emma Ault

January 1, 2023


I leave for Harlaxton in three days. Two sleeps. Tomorrow will be my last night at home for the next four months. We leave for the Chicago airport on Tuesday.


I’m terrified.


I’ve never been away from home that long, let alone a brand-new country. I know the airport will be absolute hell, I’m afraid of the long flight, and I really don’t want to cry in public. So I’ll try to get all that out now.


I can’t stop time. I can’t stop the tears. Honestly, it’s probably good that I’m crying. Healthy, even.


But, good God, I’m going to miss my family. I’m going to miss the drive home every Sunday. I’m going to miss a quiet afternoon with my dad and my dog in the chair and my mom taking a nap on the couch.


I’m going to miss Gram.


I’m going to miss playing drunk Jenga with my pals. All of them.


Time will pass by. I’ll meet amazing new people. See places I may never get to see again. I’ll look forward to it.


But right now, I need a moment. To grieve and celebrate that passed time.


What a life.


Happy New Year.



January 21, 2023       Salzburg, Austria


I’m a little tipsy on Stiegl writing this, but at least it’s helped me text my friends back.


Today has been quite eventful.


First, we got up an hour later than we were supposed to (good thing we planned ahead). We had breakfast at our hotel, and it was delicious. I look forward to it in the morning.


After, we met up for The Sound of Music Original Tour. It was absolutely amazing! We saw most of the places where they filmed, but some of it was closed for the season and some closed to visitors. Still, we got to see quite a bit of Salzburg.


We took quite a few pictures in iconic places as well. We actually had to jump a fence to take a picture of the terrace in Do Re Mi.


We wondered for a bit before getting some Euros and grabbing lunch at a street spot. I had a Stiegl and a hot dog sort of thing with mustard and onion. Delicious!


We saw some pieces of the Domquartier and Mozart residence. They were very cool, but didn’t take all our time and attention.


Finally, the Mozart Cup, an international figure-skating competition, was taking place in Salzburg this weekend. It was so fun! After a meal of sausage and sauerkraut, I drank Stiegl at the Red Bull Arena until the end. We met a few Americans watching their kids skate, which made us feel a bit closer to home. We got a little lost on the way home, but some very nice Austrians helped us on our way. I just hope tomorrow goes okay!



February 5, 2023


Bath was really cool! I wish I had more time there. We only really saw some of the city, the Jane Austen Centre, and a play, but I kind of wanted to see the Roman Baths and go to the spa (it was all booked).


The play was a wonderful alternative, though! It was called Pride and Prejudice (sort of), a jukebox musical consisting of five women alternating parts throughout the play. Although there was a pillar obstructing some of my view, it was still one of the funniest plays I’ve ever seen. 10/10 would see it again.


Stonehenge was also neat! Honestly, for the first 20 years of my life I thought it was in Ireland, but I was obviously wrong. There were lots of crows and sheep, which I loved, but I didn’t get to lick the rocks, which I did not love.


We’re driving home most of the day today, and the seats make my back hurt, so I’m hoping to go back to the Manor and get some good sleep. I’m lucky and good things happen to me.



March 19, 2023


I got on the Liverpool trip this weekend! Friday was St. Patrick’s Day, so the streets of Liverpool were packed. We went to get drinks at Tesco to pre-game, then hit the town. Quite the fun night.


Yesterday (ha ha), I took the walking tour of the city and visited The Beatles Story museum. So neat! That evening, we hit a few pubs, had some beer, then went to The Cavern, the club where The Beatles got their start. A cover band was playing some of the hits. The entire club began singing Yellow Submarine at the top of their lungs, and I had a moment. It was a joyful experience.


I’m probably going to get the Sunday Scaries, so I might write them down later! Or, I’ll keep them bottled up until I die! Who’s to say?

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