a road into the unknown

Final update

Hi everyone!

My studies and time in Germany is done now. It is time to sum up the last year.

If I look back the year behind I see mostly a lot of happiness, laughter, jokes, new great friends, new awesome experiences. On the other hand there is also some desperate feelings, lot of stress and some anger, but where you could ever escape the days when everything is not so great?

During this year I have learned a lot of things, for example language. My English has gotten a lot better (read some of my first blog-updates if you don’t believe) and now I know some German too, not much but some. I have become more confident about myself and my abilities and skills. I know I can live and work abroad. I learned a lot about different cultures and people, after that year I am much more open against other people and cultures. Last but not least, I met my girlfriend Sarah during my time abroad, that alone makes my studying abroad – time more than great.

Many people are talking about coming home – crisis. I dunno if it has hit me yet or if it never even hits. I have to admit that it feels a bit empty to be at home though, especially when girlfriend is on the other side of the Atlantic ocean. Life has changed a lot compared to the time in Germany. You start to see life and people differently.
Now is time to face new challenges, have new adventures and see where the life takes you.

My opinion is that all I described above makes studying abroad totally worth going. You will face difficulties and challenges but you will win them and become stronger, don’t be afraid to go.

I am not regretting even a bit going to study abroad. Many thanks for Dalmar for asking me to go with him to study in Germany.

Thank you all,

Eetu.

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Guests

Hello!

This spring season has been full of guests visiting me and Sarah from Finland.
All started when my brother Kalle and his girlfriend Heli came to visit here at the end of March. They stayed here few days and it was nice to show them some places here. I also managed to arrange a visit to the local wine farm to taste some wines and to get to know some things of farm’s production. The visit was very nice and we had a lot of fun there. I also invited some other Finnish exchange students and our friend Cesar from Mexico, who has been here since last September too. A very big thanks goes to wine farm’s owner Mr. Clauss, who originally invited me to his farm and told me to bring my friends too.
After Kalle and Heli left, next group was already coming in few weeks. This time there was my little brother Juuso, his girlfriend Kirsi, my second cousin Sohvi and her boyfriend Markus.  They were staying here a bit less than a week. During their stay we decided to rent a car and go to see a castle about 1 hour drive from Stuttgart. The castle is called Lichtenstein Castle and it is one of the castles, which have been a model to the Disney’s castles. We had a good day there. Everyone seemed to enjoy their visit and we did too.

Next was our old friends Olli and Eemil in line to come to visit. Me and Sarah offered accommodation to boys in our apartment. We had a lot of fun with guys and it was good to see them again after few month’s pause. Of course we had to pay a visit to Frühlingsfest when boys were here. I wonder how did they managed to get here exactly at the time when those festivals were running 😀


And last but not least. My friends Tommi, Petteri and Joonas came to visit after Olli and Eemil. With them we also went to see the festivals and we had a lot of fun, boys had not seen such a fests before and were a bit overwhelmed of the atmosphere in tent. With them we also went to do some shopping in Stuttgart and I guess that everyone found what they had on their shopping lists.

It was very nice to have such a big amount of close people visiting us and see the places where me, Sarah and all other exchange students have been hanging out, studying and working since last September. It is hard to believe we have been here so long time already.

Bye bye!

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Holiday in Finland!

Okay, not completely just holiday, but almost.
One day I will visit one Finnish company because of my thesis, but otherwise I will have good relaxing time in Finland with Sarah. We will stay there one and half weeks, from 28.5. until 8.6. Or Sarah will stay that time, I will go there 29.5. and leave 8.6. Why do I go there later than she? It is a very good question and I am sure, that people who know my extraordinary skills to mess up the flights, can already guess what is this all about.
To tell the story we have to go first back in time, about one month. That day I was working at DEKRA, doing my thesis. Then something happened, my boss said that the company can pay my flights to Finland so that I can visit the Finnish company, which I have been in contact with during my work. After hearing that I became very happy. I booked the flights with secretary and got the booking codes and everything so I thought that the ticket are now mine. Well, obviously that was a false assumption. I also booked immediately other ticket myself to Sarah so that we can travel with same flights.
After that day everything was peaceful again and day by day we became more and more excited about becoming trip. Until the D-day happened.
28.5. about 19:00 we walked in from the doors of Stuttgart airport, very happily. After 10 to 15 minutes we were desperate, angry, sad and disappointed. The reason behind all this was: I did not have ticket. I mean, there was no ticket for me. I went to Lufthansa service desk where I heard that my ticket had been reserved but never confirmed or paid so the reservation was cancelled. What a happy words.
Obviously there must have been some kind of misunderstanding at some phase of my ticket booking process but I do not know yet where.
So, Sarah had to go and I stayed standing stupidly at the airport, like too many times before already.
Luckily I managed to contact DEKRA’s travel agency and they got me new flights to next day, so here I am now waiting for boarding and writing this story. Maybe I once again finally can manage to get to plane and to Finland where my family, friends and girlfriend Sarah is waiting for me.
See ya!

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Venice

Easter and longer weekend was getting closer and closer. What to do? Originally we planned to go to some beach in Spain but apparently someone else was planning that same so flights were too expensive for us. We had to come up with plan B. Our budget was also very tight. We ended up renting a car from Thursday evening to Sunday evening and booking a camping place from Venice. So, Friday morning at 4 am. We turned our car hood to Venice direction. Driving there from Esslingen took about 10 hours, partly because of my small extra routes in Italy. I wanted to experience some smaller roads in Italy so we decided to drive from Trento to Lake Garda. That route was totally worth few extra hours. Small road over the mountains was pretty perfect to drive and to watch scenery. Also Lake Garda was really beautiful.


On our way to Venice
Anyway, we got to Venice and our camping area (Camping Rialto) around 2 pm in Friday. Camping was better than we expected, they had big 2 person tents with floor and beds. And the cost for two nights and two persons was only 44 €, perfect.
Venice itself was okay, maybe not so astonishing what I expected but still very nice. Biggest minus was big amount of tourists. More peaceful areas were very nice and we managed to find nice pizza restaurant right at coast, which was one of the coolest places I have eaten in. Pizza was also very good.


We wanted to take Gondola drive there but we had to back off after hearing the price, 80 €, maybe one day. Mostly we just walked around the city, but one day we took a water bus to Lido island right next to Venice city. The island was cool, full of very nice houses and beautiful areas. There was also long beach, but unfortunately beach was not so nice. It was pretty dirty and looked a bit unmaintained. We also found weird forgotten area at the other head of the island, all the houses were empty and the area looked like it has gone through some kind of catastrophe.
Sunday morning we headed back to Esslingen, now the driving took about 7 hours, since we drove via motorways.
I also have to give small advertisement, we rented a car from Sixt and we were very happy with them. Car was about 80 euros for the whole time and we got brand new Audi A3 Quattro. I was much happier with Sixt than Europcar what we have used before.
I can recommend Venice to everyone who likes to be near water, but you should try to choose the time to visit there so that it is not during the biggest tourist season.

See you soon!

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My thesis process

Hello again!
This time I thought to write something about my work with thesis here in Germany. So, I am doing my bachelor’s thesis at DEKRA Automobil GmbH in Stuttgart. I have 4.5 months in total to get my thesis done. Topic of my thesis is Road safety comparison between Finland and Germany.
Those are the cold facts.

As you can see from the picture the work itself is nothing but office work, which is new to me since I have always before done more or less practical and physical jobs. I have noticed that I was not made to work at office. Otherwise the work and the company is okay. My boss is nice, office is good and workmates are nice. Also the work is going well, I have stayed in schedule and my boss has been satisfied so far.
But now, the absolutely worst part of my work is the commute. I calculated that there goes 1.5 hours from the moment when I close my home door to the moment when I step into the office. Yes, I use public transportation. I need bus, train and then bus again. And the best part is that buses and trains are always completely packed, which is very nice to the Finnish person who gets very annoyed in huge crowds.
But otherwise work is okay, and I am very thankful to my boss from this opportunity to work in big international company. I am sure I will get a lot of use of it in future.
By the way, according to Google Maps I would get to work in 20 minutes by car.

Till the next time!

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Paris

Hi,

At March we did a weekend trip to Paris to celebrate Sarah’s birthday.
Paris has never been a “must go” place to me, but of course I have always thought that it would be interesting city to see and visit. Before going there I didn’t know very much what to expect, except Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe and Notre Dame. Also what I heard before the trip was that people in Paris are rude and proud and they don’t like anyone who is not speaking French.
But after the trip I have to say that we didn’t experience anything like that during our stay in Paris.

Without any planning or research we managed to go there during weekend when all the trains in Paris were free to use because of some kind of campaign to reduce cars and pollution inside the city. So of course we took advantage of that and used metros to go longer distances around the city. But if you have time, walking is the best option, since there is so much to see.


My slight fear of heights almost made me to shit myself when we went to the top of the Eiffel Tower, but luckily we survived without laundry.

People were also very nice, no one acted rudely against us. And what best, there is nice cafes and restaurants everywhere, for the good coffee La Cafeotheque is the place and probably the best bakery in Paris is La Patisserie Cyril Lignac, unbelievably tasty macarons and cakes. With a smaller budget you can also find good food and wine there, like we managed to do. Now I know how blue cheese snails and stuffed duck neck tastes like, and Sarah has experienced whole plate full of weird sea animals 🙂

All in all it was a very good trip and very nice city where we definitely have to go to visit again one day.

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Finally! Normal pace to life.

Hello!

How are you doing? I am doing pretty fine here, thanks for asking.

Two weeks ago I moved to new apartment with Sarah. We needed to find new place to live, because Sarah cancelled her rental agreement at the dorms before she went to Christmas holiday and even knew that she comes back to Germany in February to do her internship. So, after holidays I started intensive search of apartments here in Germany. I also cancelled my rental agreement at the dorms at January, so I had time till the end February to get new place to live before we become street hobos.
It was terrible job but finally I managed to find apartment and land lord who was willing to rent apartment for English speaking exchange students. I won’t recommend that process to anyone, unless you absolutely have to do it.
But I also can’t complain, this new place is absolutely great compared to that old one.
Super! (like German would say).

 Two weeks ago we went see traditional German spring carnival, weird stuff, that’s all I can say. As you can see from Dalmar’s face, there was also a lot of civil victims.

And like searching for apartment wouldn’t have been stressful enough, I also had to find the subject to my Bachelor thesis. And I also managed to do that in the end. As a Finnish it is embarrassing to say but I felt a bit proud of myself after managing to succeed in those things. Next Monday (17.3.) I will start my work at Dekra in Stuttgart and I will do that at least 4 months, so probably I will be back in Finland somewhere in July or August.

Now I have had well earned holiday and have tried to take easy, with small preparing of myself to oncoming challenges with thesis (as you can see from the picture).

Tomorrow starts mine and Sarah’s flight to Paris for weekend, can’t wait!

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End of semester

Hi everybody!

I have been lazy again, or not. Actually I have been lazy only with this blog – thing. Our autumn semester (winter semester here in Germany) is now done, all the courses are completed and exams done with huge success….
Now few words about the studies we had during the winter semester. After the semester I have a bit mixed feelings, some of the classes we had were very interesting and good, the others were not so much. Not all the classes were so closely related to my main studies, also studying in English makes everything a bit more difficult. In the end I believe I got a lot of very useful information and experience during the semester, some of the studies and laboratories I would not have been able to have in my home university.
Now only little thing to do is just to find a subject to my bachelor thesis and finish it. Doesn’t sound too hard but when you compile Germany, thesis, poor German skills and extremely bad luck, you start to get stress which rips your hair off.
But no more complaining, usually things get done somehow.

Otherwise being here has been okay after holidays. Except that Olli and Eemil flew back to Finland after finishing autumn/winter semester, so now our A-team is divided into two countries. Luckily there was still time in January to have some fun with old group by bowling, pool, sauna, baking and just messing around. Waiting for the reunion….
Oh and we got some reinforcement from Jyväskylä when Henri arrived here to study abroad, so I think we can survive this other semester too.

I almost forgot, we opened terrace season with Olli and Eemil at last day of January! Picture below can proof it.

 

By the way, we also payed a visit to Porsche museum here in Stuttgart. I have to recommend it to everyone who has even small interest to cars. The museum building itself is already a worth seeing and of course all the beautiful cars inside it… Like this one

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Long time no see

Phew! It’s been a while since I last time updated my blog. Almost two months to be exact… I know that there is no good enough reasons to forget the blog updating but I am still going to try and give some awesome explanations.
Here it comes: I have been busy.
Hopefully you forgive me 🙂

To be honest, last one and half months have been crazy, and now I am not talking about fun kind of craziness. We have had really much school stuff to do. Three different projects plus normal schooldays and laboratory works is quite nice cocktail which guarantees good stress. And of course few exams in December before holidays. But now all that is behind and I have time to review the highlights of last two months.

By the way, the reason why I have time now and why I am still in Germany writing this blog is that my autumn season here in Germany ends like it started. I missed a flight once again. This time the reason was my awful bed, which still seems to be comfortable enough to oversleep. Luckily I was able to change flight for Sunday so I still should get home for Christmas. Me and flying seems to be a bad combination.

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Pre – Christmas party

Something extraordinary happened at November. I did a trip which I certainly didn’t plan to do when I started my exchange student – time in Germany. I travelled to Finland.

But I have good expalanation for this kind of travelling. I came to visit Pre – Christmas party in Himos. And I went there with Sarah. The story behind that is simple: I got invitation to party, but I wasn’t going to join the event. But I told Sarah about it and she said that she really would like to see Finland. I also wanted to show her my great homeland and visit the party with her so then  we decide to book flights and make surprise visit to Himos and Jyväskylä.

It was good decision, I got to see my good friends and family with Sarah and also had a chance to show her something of Finland. And best of all, Sarah liked the country. Unfortunately we had only two days time to be in Finland so visit was really short but maybe next time we have more days to be there.

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