Exchange to the University of Mannheim, Germany
Semester 2, 2015
7am: Whether I’ve got class or not, I’m pretty much guaranteed to wake up with the sun since I was lucky enough to be given a see-through white sheet for a curtain…Still haven’t managed to get myself something more practical. But at least that means I get to make the most of my day…like heading out for an early morning stroll through the park with my roommate Teone, pictured proudly in her new Mannheim hoodie.
10am: After breakfast and a shower, it’s off to class at Mannheim’s castle (university) – ‘Schloss’ – where Teone is again drawing attention to the fact that she is clearly an exchange student. We started with the basics in my first German language class, learning how to count and sing the German alphabet, which will hopefully start to make life at the supermarket slightly easier. As it’s only the first official week at the university, half of my classes haven’t begun yet, so I was back home at ‘Ulmenweg’ (a complex of 7 multi-story student houses) just after lunch. I have 5 roommates in my section, and we all share a bathroom, 2 toilets and a common area with kitchen.
2pm: We passed time in the afternoon with some card activities in the common room and a visit from our new New Zealand friend (who lives a few houses down at Ulmenweg) – nothing like a bit of ‘spit’ and ‘memory’ before a couple of productive hours spent getting this castle built.
6pm: Before we knew it, dinner had approached. Tonight is our first ‘family dinner night’, where Micaela prepared a super fancy vegetable pizza entre, followed by chicken skewers. Feeling super satisfied, we enjoyed the sunset from our kitchen ledge.
8pm: At 8pm, we headed back to the castle for ‘Schlossfest’ to celebrate the beginning of the school year. Basically, the whole Mannheim community got together in the university courtyard for a massive party with loads of live local music, food and dancing. The night was topped off with an impressive fireworks display – not a bad way to bring in the beginning of classes. Looking forward to all that Mannheim and Europe have to offer over the next few months…