Well, here I am. My last day of volunteering and let me start by saying, it couldn't have come soon enough.
These past 81 days have felt like I have been living in a time loop, stuck on the same wooden roller coaster over and over and over. Getting jerked around every left and right turn. My head pounding from the continuous beating of the track. All the while trying to act like I'm enjoying the ride because, hey, I waited almost an hour in that line!
Okay, it wasn't that awful. I've actually really enjoyed my experience here. While maybe I wasn't able to make as much of an impact in the school as I was hoping, I will be leaving with many new Facebook friends, much more knowledge on Portugal's culture than I ever had before and I'll even be coming home with some insight on teaching English as a foreign language (Although, I'm not sure I'll ever find myself in a position to teach kids ever again haha.)
Most importantly, though, I have been able to accomplish the two main goals I had prior to arriving to Portugal: travel and improve my Portuguese. In my opinion, that, in itself, makes for a very successful trip.
So thank you CIEE for allowing me this opportunity. While it wasn't exactly the experience I was anticipating, I'm still leaving happy and grateful for the experience. May you continue to make a difference in the world.