I’m back, after a pretty long break (at least not as long as the last time I went into hibernation). I’m in Bremen, Germany now! The past three weeks were a blur, what with settling down in a new country, bank accounts, city and university registrations and signing up for classes. Things are starting to feel normal: temperatures in the range of 2-5ºC are starting to feel “warm” and the little closet-sized room I live in is starting to feel like home. However, strangely enough, I didn’t experience culture shock as much as I expected to. I did feel a little homesick, but I always feel it every time I go to a new place after staying somewhere for a long period of time (in this case, it happened to be my home). Or maybe I overestimated culture shock. Hey, I’m not complaining about it! 😉
The one thing that stood out was how empty and silent the streets seemed, at least where I was staying. Given the fact that I grew up in India, you can imagine how different it must have looked. The people seem friendly and patient with my pitiable efforts with German. The place is easy to get used to and feel at home.
I have not travelled very much, since the furthest was to the city registration office, 45 minutes away. But there are places to explore within the city as well. Last week I had wandered about a bit in the main square of the city. The main structures in the square are the St.Petri Dom (or St. Peter’s Cathedral), a statue of the Bremen Town Musicians (from the Brothers Grimm story), a statue of Roland, one of the Paladins of Charlemagne (the first Holy Roman Emperor) and a little alley called Böttcherstraße, which features a museum dedicated to the work of expressionist artist Paula Modernsohn-Becker (one of the few museums dedicated to a woman artist) as well as the house of Robinson Crusoe. A number of street musicians keep playing at and near the square on most days. Unfortunately, I haven’t clicked any pictures, but I will soon do a post with the photos.
Also, my worst fear of having to sleep on a park bench almost came true when I missed the last bus to my place after our international students’ welcome party and had to wait at the freezing bus station for three hours with a friend I had just met at the party. That was my biggest (mis)adventure so far in Germany! But there is something about misery that brings people together. I became good friends with the girl I had just met that night because of our shared misfortune.
It is all new experiences, especially since, as I had mentioned earlier, this is my first time travelling abroad. Each day is fascinating. There is so much to tell, so many things I’m discovering everyday. I will attempt to share as much as possible. For now, auf wiedersehen! 🙂
P.S: I just checked the “This post is super-awesome” option on my “publish” panel. Just to see what it does. So if any of you notice anything different, please do mention it in the comments.