The Beauty of Being Speechless – By Danielle Duggan


It’s difficult, especially in the craziness of a program like study abroad, to remember to set aside time to be alone with your own thoughts. Today reminded us of the importance of stepping away for our hectic lives and taking a second just to think.

My day started with a hike at 3:00 in the morning up a volcano to watch the sunset. Yes, you heard that right. My decision to take part in this mini expedition came after I finally convinced myself that I would only be in Scotland once and that I needed to soak up every second I was here. The view was more breathtaking than I can convey through words. It left me truly speechless, speaking more words than I could come up with on my own.


After a view hours of sleep, our group had a discussion about the life of Harry Potter author, J.K. Rowling, which was then followed by a tour of the multiple locations that influenced her novels. We visited the cemetery where she drew names from tomb stones to name characters after, as well as two coffee shops where she spent much of her time writing in. Rowling thought up the idea for Harry Potter during a four-hour train delay, and without that delay, none of the places I just spoke of would have much relevance at all.


The day ended with a horseback ride through the Scottish country side. Let me tell you, it was just as gorgeous as it sounds. Trotting along a seemingly endless, green field that backs up to rolling hills and a blue sky background was just as breathtaking as the sunrise this morning.


Today provided me with more than beautiful photos; it reminded me of the importance and beauty in spending time in your own head. Our heads are often so fogged with to-do lists and stresses that we forget what it’s like to explore our thoughts and create something potentially world-changing. Dream big can only happen if you add moments in your life that’ll leave you speechless. That’s the perfect opportunity for incredible ideas to take the words’ place.

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