Sunday, January 18, 2009

T-24 Hours and Counting...

Wow. I can't believe it's finally here. Words can hardly describe the excitement, eagerness, and anticipation I'm feeling right now. I still can't believe I'm about to embark on this incredible journey around the world. This has been a trip long in the making. Studying abroad has always been a priority for me, but when discussing different countries with my mom earlier this fall, I said, "Mom, I think they're all amazing. I can't decide where to go." So the obvious answer was to see them all. Thus, Semester at Sea.

487 years after Ferdinand Magellan successfully circumnavigated the globe for the first time, I will do the same. What took him 3 years will take me 108 days. We will embark from the Bahamas on Monday, January 19 and travel to Europe, Africa, SE Asia, Latin America, transit the Panama Canal, and arrive in Florida on May 6.

This will be a life-changing experience. We learn best when we're outside of our comfort zone and the familiarities of daily life are gone. I'm going to learn so much about myself, but also about other cultures, ways of life, mindsets and ways of thinking. Furthermore, with a new President and a new direction for our country, it will be interesting to see the transformation America undergoes from an outsider's perspective. We are the most beloved, hated, envied, and despised country in the world all at the same time, and I'm excited to figure out why.

I'm currently sitting in the Atlanta airport. After a long, red-eye flight with little sleep, I'm waiting for my connection to Nassau, where I will be staying at the Paradise Island Harbour Resort for the night before boarding the ship tomorrow. A lot of people are meeting at Senor Frogs to get acquainted and have some fun. You'll hear more about that and embarkation later.

A quick shout out to Natasha Lekwa. She did SAS in the fall and was extraordinarily helpful throughout my whole planning process for this trip. Thank you for putting up with all my phone calls, text messages, and millions of questions! You really made this process as smooth as it could've been.


E-mail me at

"A traveler without observation is a bird without wings." - Moslih Eddin Saadi


  1. This sounds like it's going to be an amazing semester for you, Matt! While it kinda sucks you won't be around for my last term, I look forward to hearing of your experiences and travels!

  2. Hi Matt,
    I thought about you all morning as I watched Obama being sworn in. WHAT A MOMENT!!!
    I am equally as thrilled for you as you embark on this fabulous adventure.
    I ENJOYED EVERY DAY YOU WERE HOME. I look forward to following your blog........