As a vet student abroad, I try not to take for granted that I am living in another country. My studies come first, yes, but becoming a damn good vet requires more than just cloistering myself away behind a wall of stress and textbooks. The vets that I have most admired have known how to think on the spot, handle risk, solve problems creatively, and make a team of the disparate staff and clients around them. Those are skills I can build effectively outside of staring at my bedroom wall, rote-repeating the latest list of memorize-all-this-or-else.
Exploring can be procrastination, sure. But done thoughtfully, and it can also be a chance to build situational coping reflexes.
Scotland, furthermore, is a mind-boggingly place to develop those reflexes, too.
People ask me a lot what I’ll do after I graduate. I know what I want to do, and I know what my ever-escalating student loan debt demands I do, too. I don’t know where I’ll end up after I qualify, or whether staying in Scotland will even be an option for me.
So while I’m here, I’m not going to miss it.