One year seems to be sooooooooo long, but in fact: It´s not. Now it´s over and I still don´t know where the time is. It passed by so fast. End of the exams, end of studies, end of Erasmus. Sounds sad? Well, in fact it is a bit sad but there is also the good site: I will see my friends at home soon. And there are so many positive memories. But from the beginning:
I still remember how excited I was to come to Finland, I received the letter of confirmation, booked the flight and got a message from my tutor. Wow, it´s going to start soon, that´s been my first thought. And then the 22nd of August was there and my adventure started. And in fact this is what Erasmus stands for: A big adventure. The first week was the orientation week, you met all the new people around you and got a first feeling for your new life. The most exciting part during the first week? I don´t know I would say everything.
Also an exciting experience: Getting roommates. During my studies in Germany I had my own flat, so I was absolutely not used to live together with others and so I was really excited: who will they be, HOW will they be??? Am I able to live with them???? Yes, I was, although there were some arguments and periods of total silence, but we managed somehow. The course election was exciting as well. I chose some courses in advance but I took some others as well because they just sounded interesting. If you have the choice choose whatever course you like because it´s definetly worth it.
Then there was the period of travelling. And here we were, Lapland. The best experience ever. Snow, artic ocean, the pure Finland. In my opinion a must have on the schedule. And even without the northern lights soooooooo amazing. Sledging on Europes longest sledging slope, skiing, building snowmen, sauna and after a jump into the snow. Extremly short days and Santa Claus. A perfect Finnish mixture.
The courses at JAMK: They are definitely different. The lecturers are kind, they are interested in the student´s opinion and they are not far far away but always there to help the students. Their “revenge”: Assignments and group works. I´m happy I don´t have to hear those words not any more for a long period. It´s hard to coordinate 6 group works and ten assignments and to find always a solution. But some Finns told me as well as the exchange students that if it´s too much they don´t like it. So don´t worry if you have a feeling of ……….. whatever, it´s normal and it´s getting over.
And then there´s the first goodbye. It´s christmas, people are going home and are not coming back. It´s weird to go home and know that some people are not coming back and that you have to start with new friends. But some people came back, to study the second semester or to visit their friends and that´s really the best thing ever. And where will you spend your leisure time? There are enough lakes. So you will spend your days in, on or around the lakes, having picnics and lots of fun. If you dare you swim in the lake, no matter if it´s August or March. And if the lake is frozen try ice skating. And no worries: -27 degrees is not that hard as it sounds to be 😉
And then there is Vappu and the May starts and people are leaving again and this time I have to leave as well. That´s a really weird feeling. And having snow in May is weird. In the end of April we had 20 degrees, sun shine and such a great weather and only one week later it snowed and we had -3 degrees again. It´s good when you have to prepare the last exams and assignments and you can stay at home.
Did I mention the parties? No? Ok let me say few words about parties: Party them and have fun. YOLO!!! No matter if go to the M-Building party with all the great themes, if you go to the IC after hour, if you go to Bra or Escape, if you enjoy the overall Parties or the spring break, the Pool Party or the numerous private birthday parties: Every one will find a fiting party. And if you have an overall: Buy patches and go to Parties to show people how hard you party.
Where to travel? I´ve been to Helsinki (and I guess everybody will do), Tampere (especially because they have an IKEA), Nokia (I don´t have to tell you why) and of course Lapland. But also Stockholm was really interesting and totally different from Helsinki. There are organized trips to Lapland, Stockholm and Russia, you can organize trips on your own to discover the country you are living in.
That´s been my last post, I definitely had the time of my life and will always remember that, so come here to experience it.