As can be seen from our map, LUC alumni can be found all over the world. Today’s post was written by Fabian Kemps Verhage, Sustainability Major, Class of 2013.
“Life is what happens to you, while you’re busy making other plans.”
I remember reading this quote three months ago, and thinking: “It’s not true. I have lived most of my life as I, or my parents, planned for me.” In the meantime I have changed my mind, which is one of the many lessons I have learned since LUC.
It is not surprising that I disagreed with this quote then, because at the time things were going as planned. Directly after LUC, I joined a summer school to Taipei and Shanghai, which was as I had hoped: intensive, interesting, and with inspiring people. Afterwards I spent one month catching up on sleep and preparing for the project I had planned for this year: live as a wanderer. I gave away most of my stuff and on a certain day left my parents’ house hitchhiking, without money or destination. I stayed at a squat for a week, lived and worked on a Christmas tree nursery for a month, and found a job for board and lodging at a sandwich vending-bike in Utrecht. And while this wanderer’s experiment had no itinerary, it did unravel according to plan: I found places to stay and met great people from all kinds of backgrounds in the Netherlands.
Then life happened. I stayed at my sister’s while she finished her thesis. Thereafter, just as I planned to wander off again, hoping to sail along with a cargo ship to Brazil, my father was hospitalized. Fortunately, he is doing all right at the moment and I am really happy to be here, so that I can assist with his recovery. Recently, I have started making plans again to seek a master study and learn Portuguese in Portugal. But if something intercedes, I’ll welcome the new situation. Because now I know that while life doesn’t let itself be planned, it does allow us to make a good time out of it. And to tie back to our time at LUC, I have noticed that in altering contexts, it is great to possess a golden diploma, as Limo [Class Representative for the Class of 2013] fittingly named our degree.