As most of you currently find yourselves far away from home sweet home, I do not think it is necessary to explain to you the principles of the ‘comfort zone’. You have all explored the limits of your comfort zone, and depending on your level of daredevil-ness you have crossed these limits time and time again. This might range from tasting an exotic fruit with a weird name that doesn’t look very edible to you, to jumping out of a plane with a parachute attached to your backpack. Doing something out of your comfort zone will increase feelings of self-confidence, independence and strength, and most of all happiness. And not on the unimportant side: you usually end up with a pretty entertaining story. In case you had not noticed yet, the abroad committee consists of mostly daredevils who like to do something crazy every once in a while, and wouldn’t you love to hear their stories? That is why from now on, the regular bicycle blooper will be alternated with an inspiring ‘comfort zones are overrated’ blog. Enjoy!
Last January, I left my comfort zone in Utrecht and took off for an exchange semester at Boston College. During one weekend ten friends and I decided it would be fun to rent a minivan and drive down to Philadelphia because we heard that it is always sunny there. We spent the weekend wandering around Philladelphia and its many historical sites. Besides the world famous ‘philly cheese steak’ sandwich, my most memorable moment of our time in Philadelphia was of our last night, set in a club named Blurr. Unlike the name suggests, it was a life changing experience that I will never forget. Without first consulting Tripadvisor or Google Reviews, we went to check out the club across the hostel, ready for a good night of celebrating our successful trip to Philadelphia. As we entered, we suddenly found ourselves in the midst of a sweaty crowd of dancing people where girls as well guys were vivaciously getting down and shaking their behinds in the new craze more popularly known as twerking. All around me, couples were involved in a sensuous and in sync spectacle in which their two bodies moved in mysterious ways. Needless to say, my friends and I felt a little out of place in this R-rated version of the Step Up movies. Because even though we obviously got moves, we could impossibly compare our well-behaved hip movements to the sexual healing that was going on in front of us. Yet, with the help of a few Philadelphia Beers, we decided to join the twerking crowd. We started dancing and eventually I even learned some interesting moves that I have yet to apply during a Poema night.
It can be concluded that this night did not turn out quite as we expected. When we got back to our hostel we needed a minute to look at each other and digest what had just happened. That night I saw sides of my friends that I never thought I would see, but unfortunately we have agreed on destroying all visual materials so you will just have to trust me on that. None of this would have happened if we did not get out of our comfort zone and stepped into the twerking zone instead!