I’m currently writing this from the Dublin Airport at 4:53am, where I’ve been spending the last 6 hours and where I will be spending the next 6 hours, as I wait for my connecting flight. The last few days in Berlin were busy, so that’s why I’m writing this post now.
On Wednesday, I had Unterricht in the morning (like every day), and then I went with my friends to a cafe for lunch. I honestly cannot remember what I did Wednesday afternoon, although that might just be my jetlag kicking in. I didn’t have anything scheduled, so I must have walked around and I think that was the day I started buying souvenirs to bring home.
Thursday began, as always, with Unterricht, and then lunch with my friends, and then my last Nachmittagsprogramm. We talked about all the places we’d gone and seen during the four weeks, we talked about the Stadtrallys we completed, we talked about the different topics we covered. It was a bittersweet ending because it meant I didn’t have anything Friday afternoon, but it meant the end of the program was really here.
Thursday night, HU threw a party for us at a local club. They must have rented out the whole entire club because we were the only ones there; no non-HU students or anything. We were given free pretzels and glasses of sekt when we got there, which was a nice touch. My friends and I ate pretzels and drank a bit and noted that there was no music playing. Shortly thereafter, music started playing from a side room, and Anna, one of the women who ran the whole program, encouraged us to go dance there. We made our way over to the dance floor and did our best to dance to the eclectic playlist that was being played. We spent the night going in and out of the dance room, depending on what song was playing. Eventually, the DJ’s shift was over, and the students were able to take over the aux, and after that, the music was a whole lot better. After a while, I headed home and went to bed.
The last day of the course was Friday. During Unterricht, we didn’t really do a ton. We talked about the topics from the day before and filled out a survey about the course overall. The teacher also passed out our grades for the course. Unfortunately, API takes ours and sends them directly to our universities, so I didn’t get my grade on paper, but I went up to my teacher after Unterricht and asked for it. I got a 2,0 overall, which is essentially a solid ‘B’, and I’m very happy about my grade.
After class, I went to REWE, a grocery store, with my friend, Adam, to get lunch because I was down to my last few euros. I got a mini pizza and some raspberries, and we met up with the rest of our friends at a falafel place. We sat outside and ate our lunches. When we were done, I went to go get the rest of the souvenirs I had to buy. I stopped at Berlin Kaufhaus, which is a tourist-y souvenir shop with a big selection of items. I got the rest of my souvenirs there and headed to the main Humboldt building to buy myself a HU shirt.
Once I had gotten all my souvenirs and my shirt, I went back home to take a nap before heading to my friend Melanie’s house for dinner. She invited our whole friend group and even cooked us a delicious curry. We made spring rolls too, which are more difficult to make than one might think. It was so fun to have one last night with them all before we all went our separate ways. We spent the evening eating, talking, and laughing. Eventually we all had to say goodbye and head home, which was really depressing. I really hope to keep in touch with my friends and meet up with them again sometime in the future.
Saturday, I slept in a bit. I didn’t have to leave for the airport until 7:30pm, so it was a pretty relaxed day. I laid in bed for a while before getting up and beginning to pack up. At 11:00, there was a neighborhood Tischtennis Tournier (ping pong tournament). My Gastmutter (host mom) singed me up to play in the tournament, even though I told her I was really bad at Tischtennis. I won the first match I played, but lost the next two, which meant I was officially out of the tournament. Once I got out, I went back to my house, finished packing, and read my book until it was time to leave.
My Gastvater drove me to the airport (this was my first time being in a car in a month) because my Gastmutter had to go to Hamburg in the evening, so we said our goodbyes earlier in the day. He dropped me off at the airport, and I found my way through security and to my gate. My friend, Melanie, happened to have booked the same flight as I did, so I found her and we chatted until it was time to board. Conveniently, our seats happened to be next to each other too. The flight to Dublin wasn’t bad. There was a little turbulence, but I slept through it.
We landed in Dublin at about 11:00pm, and Melanie and I got our bags and then waited for her family to pick her up. When they got here, we said our goodbyes, and I set off to find a place to spend the night, since my connecting flight is at 11:30am. Luckily, there is a 24 hour food court area right outside the terminal, so I spent most of the night there. I slept on and off a bit, and around 4:00am, the airport began to come back to life. The lights flickered on, people started coming through, the news started playing. After that, I couldn’t sleep anymore, so here I am, writing a blog post to kill time. I only have 5 1/2 hours left until my flight home, and I’m so excited to get on that plane, not just because it means I’m going home, but also because this airport is freezing cold and Aer Lingus gives out blankets on transatlantic flights.