Sunday Night – First Meeting

It finally started on Sunday evening. After only seeing and talking to each other via Zoom and in VR, we finally got to meet in person for the first time. At half past six, we went to the Stadthotel M√ľnster, where we met up with the students from Georgia. The initial meeting was not awkward, but rather very nice and relaxed. We walked together from the hotel to the train station to rent bikes for everyone at the bike station. It was a bit of an adventure, but eventually, everyone had their bikes, and we split up. All those who could already ride bikes went to the restaurant Blaues Haus. We did a little training with the others. That was a bit of fun, as it’s hard to imagine that you can’t ride a bike here, but it’s not that common to go everywhere by bike there. After the training, everyone was able to ride well enough for us to start, and one student took a scooter. Then we set off for the restaurant. I don’t think I’ve ever cycled the route so slowly and I was a bit worried that someone might get run over. But we all made it safely in the end.

In the restaurant, we sat at many different tables and had a really good chat. At my table, we talked a lot about their experiences in Amsterdam, our expectations of the week, but also about the differences between our two countries. It was exciting to get to know a new perspective. For example, we talked about fraternity, as this is a very big topic at American universities, as well as their customs and rituals.

I was a bit shy at the beginning, and it was unusual to speak so much English, but that passed really quickly, and I felt very comfortable. Everyone was super nice and interested in everything. I particularly liked how enthusiastic the students were and how happy they were about being here with us.

Everyone was tired after dinner, and we took the students home by bike and stopped by the castle on the way. This first evening definitely gave me a lot of motivation for the coming week and I’m already looking forward to showing the students our city and exchanging more stories!

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