Thought Catalog

A certain magic lingers in the air on the first morning you awake in a foreign country. Erratic noises or absolute peace may graze your ears depending on your location. Sleep dawdles on your sluggish eyelids as they blink. An unfamiliar sight forces them to snap open. Slumber swiftly drifts away upon soaking up your surroundings; this is not your room. The wall colors are off, the décor lacks any of your personal touches, and the comforts are kept to a minimum. Your back aches from the old, battered mattress. Sleeping on it for several months suddenly seems a daunting task. A stranger, or two, sleeps on a twin size bed next to your own. All you see is the rise and fall of their sleeping body.

Tiptoeing, you head for the window. The urge to sprawl the shutters open is consuming, but maintaining civil roommate relations is crucial. Instead…

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