European Tour: Austria

European Tour: Austria



Welcome to the fourth article in the European Tour series!


As we finished up our interesting experiences in Italy, we took a boat back to the mainland, got back on our buses and drove to our next destination: Innsbruck, Austria!

(Low-key, this is gonna be a short one because I really only have one great and fun memory)

When we first arrived, we payed a visit to the area where the 1964 and 1976 Olympic Winter Games were held, although the only thing we really concentrated on was the ski jump. Regardless, it was still really cool to see even though it was June and there was absolutely no snow.

We got into town and checked into our hotels and we just relaxed the majority of the time. The chaperones gave us options to separate into groups, to go to the amazing pool at the spa or to go somewhere else. Being the practical fish that I am, of course I chose the pool. I would be an idiot not to because I had insane urges to swim the entire trip and I didn't want to not use my swimsuit during the trip.

The pool was SO pretty. It was both indoor and outdoor, and the indoor portion had a separate area with slides and stuff. Now that I think about it, those were probably for little kids, but if you asked us if we cared, the answer would be a definite, and unison, NO.

The indoor portion of the pool was warm and incredibly relaxing. To add to the ambiance, there was this rock structure in the middle that you could just relax on. The outdoor portion was connected by a tunnel that you swim through, with a temperature change to go along with it. It was heated because of the weather, and you had a view of the mountains that you could stare at while you just float and relax.

This particular night was one of my favorites out of all of them. The group of people I was with were so much fun (and oddly enough, a decent chunk of us go to college together). We swam, relaxed, acted like idiots, and had a ton of laughs. We stayed until the pool was closed for the night and all of our prune-y toes and fingers were so worth it. Although, with how long we were in the water, I'm pretty sure most of our bodies resembled a prune altogether. It was nothing but good vibes and smiles; making the near-end of out trip a great one.

We were there for two days that I can remember, but I honestly can't recall anything else that we did while we were there. The only memory that remains with Austria is the slight recollection of the Olympic site and the pool with some great people. There are few specific moments that I would want to relive for this trip, and that one night is definitely one of them. We all got so close and I loved every minute of it.


I know this was a short one, but like I said, I really only care about and remember one (and a half) thing(s).

The next article of the European Tour series will be the "finale", which will include two places in Germany! Stay tuned!

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PSA: Keep Your Body-Negative Opinions Away From Little Girls This Summer

But our own baggage shouldn't be shoved on to those we surround ourselves with.


It's officially swimsuit season, y'all.

The temperature is rising, the sun is bright and shining, and a trip to the beach couldn't look more appealing than it does right now. This is the time of year that many of us have been rather impatiently waiting for. It's also the time of year that a lot of us feel our most self-conscious.

I could take the time to remind you that every body is a bikini body. I could type out how everyone is stunning in their own unique way and that no one should feel the need to conform to a certain standard of beauty to feel beautiful, male or female. I could sit here and tell you that the measurement of your waistline is not a reflection of your worth. I completely believe every single one of these things.

Hell, I've shared these exact thoughts more times than I can count. This time around, however, I'm not going to say all these things. Instead, I'm begging you to push your insecurities to the side and fake some confidence in yourself when you're in front of others.


Because our negative self-image is toxic and contagious and we're spreading this negative thinking on to others.

We're all guilty of this, we're with family or a friend and we make a nasty comment about some aspect of our appearance, not even giving a single thought to the impact our words have on the person with us. You might think that it shouldn't bother them- after all, we're not saying anything bad about them! We're just expressing our feelings about something we dislike about ourselves. While I agree that having conversations about our insecurities and feelings are important for our mental and emotional health, there is a proper and improper way of doing it. An open conversation can leave room for growth, acceptance, understanding, and healing. Making a rude or disheartening remark about yourself is destructive not only to yourself, but it will make the person you are saying these things around question their own self worth or body image by comparing themselves to you.

My little sister thinks she's "fat." She doesn't like how she looks. To use her own words, she thinks she's "too chubby" and that she "looks bad in everything."

She's 12 years old.

Do you want to know why she has this mindset? As her older sister, I failed in leading her by example. There were plenty of times when I was slightly younger, less sure of myself, and far more self-conscious than I am now, that I would look in the mirror and say that I looked too chubby, that my body didn't look good enough, that I wished I could change the size of my legs or stomach.

My little sister had to see the older sibling she looks up to, the big sis she thinks always looks beautiful, say awful and untrue things about herself because her own sense of body image was warped by media, puberty, and comparing herself to others.

My negativity rubbed off onto her and shaped how she looks at herself. I can just imagine her watching me fret over how I look thinking, "If she thinks she's too big, what does that make me?"

It makes me feel sick.

All of us are dealing with our own insecurities. It takes some of us longer than others to view ourselves in a positive, loving light. We're all working on ourselves every day, whether it be mentally, physically, or emotionally. But our own baggage shouldn't be shoved on to those we surround ourselves with, our struggles and insecurities should not form into their own burdens.

Work on yourself in private. Speak kindly of yourself in front of others. Let your positivity, real or not, spread to others instead of the bad feelings we have a bad habit of letting loose.

The little girls of the world don't need your or my negative self-image this summer. Another kid doesn't need to feel worthless because we couldn't be a little more loving to ourselves and a lot more conscious of what we say out loud.

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7 Things Never To Do While Visiting London

Abandon all hope, ye who use public transport during rush hour.


As I've said before, London is an interesting place to be, however, there are a handful of things that should be avoided. Of course, mistakes will be made and lessons will be learned, but maybe if you read this, you'll know better faster.

1. Do not stand on the left.


... of the escalator. Some people prefer to walk down to their train, and if you're in the way, it's as if you were sent from hell itself, especially during rush hour

2. Do not take the Central Line.


Unless you're going to the Museum of London or St. Paul's. Or you're into weird smells and clinging to the pole because there is no such thing as a smooth ride. To each their own.

3. Do not attempt to get anything to eat in Leicester Square after 4:30.


Leicester (pronounced like "Lester") Square is one of the best places to grab some grub in Central London because of the sheer amount of choices. Just plan to eat early because everyone else knows that very thing and you'll end up waiting an eternity for a table, then food.

4. Do not rely completely on an app.


It's totally fine if you have no clue where you going or how public transport works, but once you get the hang of it, you're allowed to trust your own judgment. Maybe you don't have to get off the train then switch twice before getting there instead of riding a few stops more and switching once.

5. Do not attempt to take the Tube during Rush Hour when you have other options.


Just take the bus if you have to to the national railways. The SWR trains are slow, but at least you're not packed in like sardines and there are usually open seats.

6. Do not forget to check for student discounts and bring your ID.


Remember this when you go to the palaces, it could save you six pounds and make a real difference if you're going with others.

7. Do not let anything ruin your day.


There will be a lot of things that will try to ruin your day... Like people who intentionally break some rules above, lines (Sorry, queues), poor navigation skills, etc. Still, you're in London. Savor your visit, and don't let any mistakes or people without common decency ruin your visit.

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