Before I set sail for my Semester at Sea, I decided to do a project. I knew I would learn a lot through my experience abroad and I wanted to take away something tangible that I could remember forever. Besides the countless personal memories and stories, I wanted to have something that could not only impact my life, but hopefully other people’s lives as well.

My project, called “The Soles of Europe,” ended up being one of the highlights of my trip. The goal of the project was to speak to people in each country and ask them to share with me their best piece of advice. It allowed me to speak with random people I met along my journey and learn something from each of them.

I hope the following advice sticks with you like it has with me.

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Photo Credit: Caraline Trecha

“Live fast, die young, have no regrets and get in trouble.”

-Phillip, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

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Photo Credit: Caraline Trecha

“Always be optimistic in life.”

-Rulon, Edinburgh, Scotland

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Photo Credit: Caraline Trecha

“No stress, stay cool.”

-Antonio, Dublin, Ireland

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Photo Credit: Caraline Trecha

“You only have one life. Forgive those who hurt you, love beyond measure and live each day as if it were your last.”

-Sister Angela, Fátima, Portugal

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Photo Credit: Caraline Trecha

“Live. Time is a precious thing, the watch don’t stop. Don’t try to find a beautiful man try to find the better man. Gorgeous men is dangerous.”

-Ze, Lisbon, Portugal

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Photo Credit: Caraline Trecha

“Don’t drink, don’t smoke.”

-Serge and Francisco, San Sebastian, Spain

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Photo Credit: Caraline Trecha

“Be happy and give attention to the small things in life. Be aware of those around you. It’s not about money it’s about the people. Give your friends hugs.”

-Nick, Helsinki, Finland

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Photo Credit: Caraline Trecha

“Get the most beautiful and most important experience in your life.”

-Maria, Oslo, Norway

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Photo Credit: Caraline Trecha

“We came from the nature but we need to live in order to learn. We don’t need money but rather experiences and events. Learn from the world around you. One world, we are one, small world but big universe.”

-Rodriego, Gdańsk, Poland

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Photo Credit: Caraline Trecha

“Live the life you love, love the life you live. With money the value of life disappears.”

-Eloise, Paris, France

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Photo Credit: Caraline Trecha

“Do the things you’re most afraid of. Enjoy every moment, especially with your family.”

-Cecilia, Ottawa, Canada

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Photo Credit: Caraline Trecha

“Most important is family and friends. Not money, but living with people you love.”

-Joseph, Stockholm, Sweden