I know I’ve been absent from the blog for the last few weeks (sorry mum), so I thought I’d just write a quick post summarising what I’ve been up to.
Since my last post, I’ve finally started at Freie Universitat- only a good month after Birmingham went back! The process for starting back is pretty gradual; the first week you turn up to classes that you might be interested in taking and then sign up to them once you feel it suits you (people are still signing up now in the third week). Although I know this seems strange and potentially a little unorganised, I actually found it to be a better system than at UoB as it means you don’t sign up and have to attend 6 months worth of classes for a module that didn’t turn out how you thought it would from it’s description. I’m taking 30 ECTS this semester and I’ve got almost free reign on which subject areas I can delve into (as long as they are taught in English!), so Ive picked: Comically Challenged: Political (In)Correctness (a module about stand-up comedy), The Holocaust in Europe, American Presidency in the Age of Trump, From Döner to Currywurst (a look at the food industry and culture in Germany/Berlin), National Socialism in Film (looking at propaganda films/representation of Nazis in current films) and I’m also continuing to learn German!
Another thing to note about the uni life is that they don’t go easy on assessment: whereas in Birmingham I’d have to do 2000 words for the equivalent of what is here, 5 ECTS, you’re expected to write 4,500-6000 words per paper! As a result, I’ve opted for mainly exam assessed modules (a first for me!) and they will take place in February. Also, since going out is a huge part of the university experience in England, I’m not sure what I expected re: fresher’s week, but it’s easier to just say: don’t expect anything. Literally, nothing. No organised events, not even non-alcoholic! A huge contrast from UoB’s welcome back each year…yes, I am missing FAB! I’m just lucky that I managed to make loads of friends through my pre-semester language course.
I’ve been lucky in the fact that the ONE korfball team (bar Munich) in the ‘east’ of Germany is actually at Freie Universitat, so I’ve joined and I couldn’t be happier with my decision. I was initially worried that the club here wouldn’t be big enough to play games at practice – literally no one knows what it is here – but it’s a decent size, the people are lovely and I’m just happy to be playing again, even if it’s for significantly less time than at UoB (I miss you guys!).
And everything else in between…
Shout out to Meg for messaging me ‘brunch?’ almost every other day- I’m poor but well fed! But seriously, all I do with my friends here (all either English or Irish, how international) is go out to eat or drink/dance, which is essentially the same as in Birmingham. Only problem is that Birmingham is significantly cheaper than Germany’s capital city…15 euro doesn’t get you a ticket, 3 jager bombs, taxi and cheesy chips here! Again, donations will be accepted to the ‘keep me out drinking and eating’ fund!
p.s don’t worry about my health Nan…I’m going for bike rides round the lake a lot (see the lovely sun set picture!)