I arrived in Esslingen almost one week ago in the morning. Our flight went very fast and we found the people who came to meet us at the airport easily. We went to the school where we got some basic information about everything. We also ate in the school; the food was better than we had thought because we had heard that the German school food is not as good as the Finnish. The food doesn’t include anything to drink or a salad or bread, like we are used to in Finland. You have to buy everything separately. From the school we went together with our host mother at their place. They lived in the old part of Esslingen, and it was very beautiful! The architecture here is totally different than in Finland. We spent the two first days with them and got to eat some typical German food; sauerkraut and sausages! They also helped us to get to know the city etc. On Thursday we finally got keys to our own rooms in a dormitory. It’s a bit further away from the center of Esslingen, but the area seems pretty nice. I share my bathroom with another girl and kitchen is shared with six people. The building is old, but it has been renovated a couple of years ago so it’s quite nice. Friday was the first day in school. We got again some information about everything concerning our stay. The first weekend went very fast. We went out with other exchange students and walked in the area where we live. On Sunday is everything closed in Germany (except some bakeries and gas stations) so Sunday is a day of rest here. I think it’s quite boring.
During last week we did many things with the help of the international office. Registered us at the city, opened a German bankaccount (it’s a weird system with the rents in here; we don’t pay our rents, they take the money from our accounts) and in the end of the week we finally got our internet connection! We did also have our German lessons every day, from 13-17, so it was very intensive German studying for the first week. This weekend we were in Stuttgart on Saturday to do some shopping. We were only on one street, because it was the main shopping street. So there is still a lot to see in Stuttgart! It’s very exhausting to speak the whole day another language and be in a new place. I think the culture in Germany is quite the same as in Finland, but the prices are much cheaper! I shouldn’t have taken any cosmetics or clothes with me from Finland. Also eating out in a restaurant or a café is much cheaper (not to mention the wine!).
Weather here has been warmer than in Finland; however I have been missing my winter jacket in the evenings and mornings… But in the day time it has been mostly sunny!
Real studies will start this week, I’m going to meet the professor from my faculty on Tuesday, so then I will know the courses I’m going to take..