1. You throw up a “W” in all your pictures.
Did you really travel outside of Madison if there isn’t a picture of you boasting your Badger pride in every city you visit?
2. You compare the stats of every Badger team to that of every other university.
I’m the first to admit that I’m not the biggest fan of sports; the atmosphere of game day is more exciting than the game itself. However, when I was abroad, I was the first person to brag about how good our sports teams are, saying, “well the Badgers have been in the Sweet Sixteen every year I’ve been at school,” or “the Badgers won the Outback Bowl in 2015!”
3. You find Badger gear anywhere and everywhere.
On the walk to my hostel in Copenhagen, there was a Badger sweatshirt on a mannequin on the sidewalk of a thrift shop. Talk about a random reminder of school spirit; Badger apparel is everywhere. And where there’s apparel, there’s probably a fellow Badger nearby who you can connect with.
4. You can walk up any hill with ease.
The people you’re with may complain about walking up a hill, but your walks up Bascom Hill every day for semesters have prepared you for this most rewarding moment of your entire college career.
5. You are taken aback by the reliability of the European bus system because you’re so used to the 80 being late.
We’ve all been there — it’s raining, you have an early morning class and you just aren’t up to walking up Bascom, so you take the 80. Only it’s 15 minutes late and jam packed with all the other kids who have the same idea. In Europe, the buses and other modes of public transportation are rarely late and much more user friendly, meaning even if it’s raining, it’ll be there when it’s scheduled or there will be several announcements saying otherwise.
6. You finding yourself wishing the Unions were just a quick walk away.
Being abroad comes with its own set of unique places to study, but there’s nothing quite like sitting at Memorial Union studying with a view of the lake or being at Union South and sitting next to a fire place, with an ice creamery a quick walk away.
7. You have to settle for Ben & Jerry’s because Babcock doesn’t export.
Speaking of the ice creamery close by, Babcock ice cream is a delicatessen all Badgers (and their families) know and love. While Europeans think their Ben & Jerry’s is the best, you know it’s nothing compared to Babcock, and the only reason you are longing to get back to Madison is to eat it.