Monday, September 29, 2014

Tatiana R - Freiburg, Germany - Fall 2014

My First Impressions of Living in Freiburg

When I chose Freiburg im Breisgau, I had not expected it to be exactly the type of town I was looking for. With the view of the surrounding hills/mountains, the perfect suburb to city layout (with quick and easy transportation), beautiful buildings, the friendly people, the almost staggering amount of cute little kids, and even the green/liberal attitude. That being said, I've grown up bilingually, English and German, with both citizenships, so Freiburg has been my window into future opportunities and lifestyle, not just here but also the rest of the country. So far I've been living in Freiburg for almost a month, and its been really wonderful, but has also had some very strange issues.

Most German students are still on vacation until school starts late October, meaning that our apartments are pretty empty. This means the rest of the students in my program almost feel like the only people we can talk to are the other people in the IES Language and Area Studies program, which has already become an issue. Most of us have already gotten so used to seeing each other that we have already gotten slightly sick of the others.

This is the first time I can completely say I'm on my own, so this has been not just an adventure of life abroad but also my first stroke of independence. With that there have been some things I really had not expected. First off, finding garbage cans has been difficult, something I would have taken for granted back in America, but when you do happen to find one, you will have to sort it in some weird system that only Freiburg follows. Also if you happen to be away from your apartment and need to find a bathroom, it can be very difficult to find one that is readily available, i.e. not in stores. Wifi, or WLAN, is non-existant unless you have an awesome roommate who lets you use his on your phone, so you will definitely buy a data plan with either AldiTalk or O2. Side note, Freiburg has one of the highest populations of dreadlock wearers. Okay, I don't really know if that's
true, but they are everywhere! Lol.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Tatiana! I'm glad that you are enjoying Germany so far! I was wondering if you could tell me about the culture shock you went through and how you dealt with that?

Violet Luczak ELmhurst College CPE

12:34 AM  

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