Tellus: (tel’us), n. 1. [Latin] earth, soil, and the land; a country; the world. 2. a collection of Willamette University student’s insights, stories, photos and thoughts from their experiences studying abroad.

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Aberystwyth: Constitution Hill »

These two photos were taken while on a hike into Welsh countryside, during my last week at Aberystwyth. I had spent the past three months catching the sun rise from this hill, nestled between the sea and the small town, and watching it disappear into the hill eight hours later. It had been a wild three months abroad, much of it spent traveling away from Aberystwyth. Unfortunately, days like this, which supplied the time to pause and sincerely reflect on the magnificent beauty of the countryside, were rare. Hiking constitution hill was a box that remained empty on my checklist for the duration of my program and after the climb, it was an activity that I had wished I had done on a weekly basis. On the hike, my three classmates and myself were joined by a girl finishing a program outside of Mumbai, where she had spent much of her fall ill and dealing with witnessing the violent murder of her first host family’s handicapped servant. While none of us were able to relate to the girl’s tragic experience, the account of her hardships were moving. We spent the day swapping tales of our sojourn, living the highlights vicariously through one another. True, I experienced the Welsh culture but that is not what I’ll remember from my time in Wales. With nearly 1000 internationals, Aberystwyth is truly an impressive agglomeration of world cultures. With total population of nearly fifteen thousand, I felt as equally influenced by the cultures, world views and thoughts of the Polish, Germans, and Finnish. The sight before us only complimented my reflection of the camaraderie that had been built. I’m not a very religious person but the level of breath-takingly pure tranquility captivating us there, several hundred feet above the Atlantic, subjected me to recognize a higher power. The moment was surely made for Kodak.

Avocados and Fallen Umbrellas: Stand Watchmen and Wait »

{Post 3 from blog} Ok, so I left off explaining some of the cultural differences that I have seen so far in Prague along with a brief overview of what I had been doing. I am now settled into my flat and it has been a blast! My flat mates are hilarious and we have […]

Morocco for tourists »

I had one friend in Morocco who absolutely refused to do “touristy” things like ride camels and visit famous restaurants. She wanted the most “authentic” experience she could get. One weekend I got her to drive out to the Sahara with me. When we got to the town we were accosted by all the tour […]

Coping With Horrible Pasts »

One of the group trips my program sponsored was to Krakow, Poland. During this trip we visited the Auschwitz/Birkenau concentration camps from World War II. This is a picture of one of the signs in the Auschwitz camp. The presence in the camp is heavy, full of sadness and death. No amount of time can […]

Re-Entry »

Edward McGlone Re-entry blog post This picture was taken at the memorial for the Trojan Horse Massacre, an event that helped turn the tide of international opinion against that Apartheid regime’s increasingly violent suppression of independence movements. The Trojan Horse Massacre happened in the townships of Athlone and Crossroads in 1985 when Apartheid police forces […]

Visions of Street Performers »

A less extravagant photo than the title suggests, this was a shot I got from one of the many street performances from the historic center in Quito. The one act detailed a meeting between camera-toting, backpack-wielding westerner and the primitive unchanging native. As most dramatists might hope for, I immediately felt a connection to the […]

The Land of Bare Feet » This is me on the side of a main road in Waihi, selling fruit for a couple I decided to WWOOF with after school finished. We got to eat all the fruit and veg we wanted while we worked!

Out of the Smog; from Pune to Nanegao » I took this photograph of Anishet while climbing a mountain in the Western Ghats in Maharashtra, India. We were visiting an organic farm just an hour from Pune, and if nothing else, the air alone tasted so good. The rumor is, spending one day in Pune India is the equivalent to smoking 1 ½ […]

Alive in Vietnam »

What Are You Doing? »

I was sneaky, very sneaky, with my photo-taking during an excursion to the Saturday market in Otavalo. Not wanting to draw any more attention to myself than my pale skin and blue eyes already did, I held my camera at the level of my waist, out of view of most everyone around me, and surreptitiously […]