If looking for Juhi Patel during her senior year, it might be wise to check somewhere other than the ice cream aisle of the grocery store.
“I don’t think I’ll ever be able to eat strawberry ice cream over here again after tasting strawberry gelato in Italy,” Patel said. “Our strawberry ice cream is just so inferior; it tastes so fake compared to actual strawberry gelato.”
European culture is far different than American lifestyle. They use public transportation more frequently, the houses and showers are smaller, and their gelato is far superior to simple American ice cream, according to seniors Juhi and Selena Patel.
The two were able to experience this first-hand this summer during their 15-day, nine-country European tour to places like Vatican City.
They explored Europe in a group of 43 people. In that mix of people, there was a family from Miami as well as three families from Abu Dhabi.
They clicked early on with the other travellers and continued to connect throughout the duration of the trip.
“We would stay up just talking and watching shows we couldn’t understand and try to figure out what was going on,” Juhi said.
They are still in contact with their new friends. They have a group message composed of all of the kids, and they FaceTime often.
They visited many museums including the Louvre and their favorite, the Victorian Albert Museum.
“Each museum could take you months to go through because they’re so big,” said Selena.
The Victorian Albert housed exhibits from many countries around the world
They got to see the highly acclaimed Mona Lisa in the Louvre.
“She’s in a huge glass display on one wall and there’s a rope where everyone crowds around,” Juhi said. “It feels like you’re at a concert or something.
“There’s so much pushing and shoving.”
An important factor of any trip is the food, which Juhi and Selena got plenty of. From pizza in Italy to Thai food in Switzerland (yes, Thai food in Switzerland) they had it all.
Their adventures through Europe have left them with lifelong memories and amazing stories to tell.
“Europe left such a big impact on me,” Selena said. “I’m actually considering going to study abroad there in college or going to stay there for two months at once because I actually loved it there.”