(Rachel picks up her luggage and walks out from behind the counter.)
LUKE: So you’re leaving, huh?
After waltzing into town on a whim in March, Rachel is now out of there after putting in a full seven weeks or so as Luke’s live-in girlfriend and diner assistant. (You can see that she is taking the leather camera case that Luke bought her and Lorelai chose). It’s amazing how little we actually learn about her (not even her surname, or how she came to Stars Hollow in the first place to become Luke’s girlfriend).
Rachel was never a real character, just a plot device. She came to Stars Hollow to remind Lorelai about the Dragonfly, an old inn that now becomes part of Lorelai and Sookie’s goals for the future. She also arrived to help Luke understand that he has feelings for Lorelai, and that he is definitely over Rachel, who he had long held a torch for (in fact, he more or less admitted to Lorelai that he has been in love with a fantasy all these years).
Amazingly, one thing Rachel didn’t come to do was to help Rory with her journalism career. It’s almost unbelievable that Rory got to meet a real-life photojournalist, and one who is also young, cool, and travels the world for her job, covering important political stories, just as Rory longs to do, and not once do we see Rory ask her for advice, or any interaction between them at all, apart from Rachel bringing them food and drinks in the diner.
This would have been the most incredible opportunity for Rory to talk to a freelance journalist, ask about the perks and downsides of the job, managing the day-to-day aspects of such work, the difficulties of travelling to distant and even dangerous locales, the need for being independent and organised, or even the publications that Rachel has sold stories to. It shows a lack of keenness for her future career that is truly disappointing.