And, here it was. The farewell parties were over, suitcases packed, ticket in hand. I turned around to wave my mom and our friend good-bye, and I was off to meet the new “old world” and face whatever adventures it brought my way. Yes, I was flying on September 11th. I know, I know, but I am not superstitious and the good deals were just too good to miss. With the time change, I landed in Frankfurt on the evening of September 12th, taking the train to Tuebingen. Now, the train: I have heard and seen nothing but the highest praise for German trains from all the travel shows. After paying what could have been a flight ticket's worth, there I was: on the great mighty DB. And it was nothing at all like I pictured. Not overly comfortable, nowhere to put your bags (trains tend to be pretty packed on weekends), and overall kind of messy. Where is the German standard? Next shocker: on the regional train going from Stuttgart to Tuebingen, some people would not move their bags off the seat next to them to offer you a place, unless you specifically addressed them in German. This is when I realized we are not in Canada anymore. Ah, how I miss you, polite, courteous Canadians!
The good thing about the University is that they assigned each of the new arrivals a person to meet them and take them to the dorm. As we were walking around the corner of the soon-to-be "my building", I noticed a particularly loud bunch of people on the balcony of the 4th floor. "well, good thing they're not my roommates"-I thought. Little did I know, that is exactly where my dorm was destined to be: in the biggest party house in the whole building. Again, the dorm was not what I imagined based on the given description. It is a shared apartment between six people, with a kitchen and a balcony in the middle and a left and right wing, consisting of 3 rooms and 1 bathroom with a shower each. Needless to say, the noise isolation is next to non-existent. First impression of the room: prison cell straight from the Cold War. Really, I did not think anyone lived like this anymore. Yikes. I need to move out asap, but for now, sleeeeep. Tomorrow morning is the first group meeting and I have a very vague idea of where it is.