My Way to Bamberg
Hello! Thank you so much that I got a lot of response coming into my Email and social media from all of you who is really interested to try to apply for the HSK programm and all I can say is : GO FOR IT! trying won't hurt anyone. Just do your best, don't put your hope at this too high, just let it flow, if you get the scholarship then congratulations! if not, don't be too disappointed, because there are sooo many way to go to Germany, which I'll explain later ;) Now, i want to share my experiences when I was in Germany for the first time (thanks to DAAD and the Sommeruni Bamberg team who made one of my dream come true).
So I flew from the Soekarno Hatta airport on the 31st of July 2017 and arrived at Frankfurt am Main on the next day. But my course begun in 2 days, so I planed to visit my friend in Bamberg first and stayed at her WG (Wohngemeinschaft) for 2 days. I knew Johanna from the Couchsurfing application (click here if you want to try the coachsurfing experience : Triff Locals auf der ganzen Welt und übernachte bei ihnen | Couchsurfing), where you can find people who might be interested to give you their couch to stay for couple days during your travel. She was a student at the Bamberg University as well, so she agreed to help me to get to know the city and the unversity first before my course starts. When I arrived at Frankfurt, I had no idea how I could go to Bamberg. I saw the Flixbus but didn't know where to buy the ticket, then I went to the ticket booth and told the lady that I need a train ticket to Bamberg. I needed to transit 1x and the trip was 3 hours long with the ICE! When I was in the ICE, there was almost no place for my 30kg luggage and a man with a small luggage help me to put my luggage on the top where there's still place. The ICE was 15 minutes late at the transit, so I missed my other train, I was panicking, but then the man that helped me with my luggage asked me where I wanted to go and I said Bamberg, and thankfully he was going to the same direction and missed the train too, but he said we could take the next train. But the next problem was : NO ELEVATOR! He even offered me to bring my gigantic luggage and I bring his small luggage and from there I thought : the germans are actually really friendly and helpful, not like what I imagined before that they're individual and stiff.
Not long after that, our train arrived and I arrived safely in Bamberg. But I promised Johanna that I'll be at the train station at 14:55 and she would come and pick me up but it was waaay past that and I looked everywhere, I couldn't find her. And I didn't have internet connection and there was no WLAN also at the station. So when someone walked by, I stopped him and asked him to give me his internet connection fo a while to contact my friend. He gave me his phone instead, because he didn't know how to do that.... and his phone was "not so high tech" so I thought there's no way that this phone could share internet connection. He saw me confused and then said that I could use his phone to call my friend. After I called her, he accompanied me to wait for her in front of the station. Not long after that, she came with her red car and I thanked him once again. There's also no elevator at her WG! so we tried so hard to bring my luggage upstairs, but then I looked at the view from her window and it was perfect!
this is from the park right in front of her WG:
She even made this note in case I found my own way to her place :")
She lived with 2 other friends and they were having a rooftop party when I got there. Hanging out with them made me feel like my german language was reaaaly bad, I asked them to speak really really slow so that I could understand better, but they were so patient and helpful. It was really heartwarming.
I took a walk, because Bamberg is not really big, with 30 minutes I was already at the center. You can also take a bus to go anywhere inside this city (but don't forget to pay for the ticket to the driver, otherwise you'll be a Schwarzfahrer and could be fined)
Bamberg is a really lovely city. It's not too big neither too small, it's just enough. The people are friendly, they say "Hallo" everytime I met their eyes. Life in Bamberg is really simple, you got supermarket nearby, good university and school, a nice warm music shop, small movie theater, underground club, restaurants and cafes, nature, and pretty much everything that you need and wish for. Not a lot of people have heard about this city, but I think this city is worth the visit.
Thank you so much for reading this post and I hope this will help you to determine more about your dream to go to Germany. I will also tell you about the Hochschulsommerkurs experience next time! :)