These past two semesters, I have had so many friends studying abroad all over the world and while I missed them so much, part of me always felt like I was there. At first, I and many others were not so sure about the idea of a "Snapchat Story" with all your friends illustrating their fun night out while you are still at home watching Netflix because no one invited you. Then, we all eventually got over it and adapted to post our own stories as well as to ignore others.
On the other hand, I am so happy this Snapchat Story idea was invented and brought to the app because now I can see what my friends abroad are seeing in real life. A few of my close friends and sorority sisters studied abroad in London this semester and every time they took pictures of the London Eye or Big Ben, I felt as if I was right next to them enjoying the same view. As a child, I was lucky to go on a family trip through London and France and so seeing my friends see some of the monuments I vaguely remember is also so cool.
Additionally, most of my friends are studying abroad in places I have never been and had not considered exploring until I saw their adventures. Two of my friends are in Israel right now and a few weeks ago, I saw the slightly scary but also fascinating process of going through customs. I mean, of course, many countries have amped up security but this particular friend illustrated that so perfectly in her story.
Besides that, I am able to see so many sights and places I have read about in the Bible and studied in religious studies courses. This semester, I took an introductory course on the Old Testament and immediately was fascinated by the whole course. At the end of the semester, my friend left to study abroad in Israel and visited the Dead Sea, the Red Sea, Judea, and so many other sites and cities too.
Before I thought Snapchat stories were just a place to prove you were doing something on a Saturday night or to ensure all your friends knew where you were and who you were with, but now I see that these stories can be a powerful tool. I am almost done with college and most likely will not get the experience again to see these incredible places myself or on Snapchat again, so I am thankful for those friends who posted almost constantly while abroad because I felt right there with them.