Friends are connected heart to heart – distance and time can’t break them apart.
Let me introduce myself first. I am Gülşah Can from Turkey, 22 years old, currently one of the volunteers at Urbana Mladež. I am sure you want to live abroad and experience a foreign culture, meet new people and learn a foreign language, so I do. Two years ago I experienced Erasmus in Wuppertal/Germany. Going to Europe as a Non-Eu citizen is pretty hard. You have to apply for a schengen visa and for that you have to give lots of files to the embassy and you have to wait for weeks within a doubt whether the visa will arrive your home on time before the flight. I prepared all the files they wanted, but I always had nightmares about not having a visa and missing my flight to Germany. Finally, when the day came, when I was in the airplane, I was sreaming inside “I am on my way to Germany!!!” but of course in Turkish 🙂
First month was the worst of all months! I had no phone, no money, no friends! I couldn’t even speak English because it was the first time speaking with foreigners. The classes that I took were way too difficult to understand, they were beyond my english level. But hey, I didn’t give up! I watched some english spoken series, I went to a library 4 days a week, rest 3 days I was partying 😀 After one month, finally I had my Erasmus scholarship and I bought a new phone. After that everything became easier, I could go outside alone as I had an online map on the phone, I could speak a little more with foreigners because I spent most of my times with native english speakers. I stayed in Germany 1 year in total and in the second term of college I took german course. Now I understand almost everything but my answers are still short 😀
I gave salsa classes for Erasmus people voluntarily, I choreographed flashmob dance and we presented it in the international dinner.
I travelled as much as I could afford. I visited some big cities in Germany such as Frankfurt, Cologne, Dusseldorf, Hamburg and Berlin. I also went to Amsterdam, Paris, Prague, Vien, Budapest, Rome, Pisa, Florence, Venice, Verona and Milan.
I shouldn’t forget mentioning about carnivals in Cologne! I joined them 3 times in a year. Many people around the world would come to see this only. You should have seen the imagination of people’s costumes.
But above all, the friendship made everything perfect. I met my best friend in Erasmus, we were always together, every single day. Even we are far away now, we skype or text to each other. So, don’t be scared, make most out of Erasmus! But prepare yourself for the post erasmus syndrome as well because life won’t be the same after that. #yolo my friends!
This article is part of “Cro – EU – Planet Earth” project which is funded by the European Union. Objective of our project is to inform Croatian youth and involve them in various educational, work related, volunteering and traveling opportunities. If you want to be updated on various opportunities “Cro – EU – Planet Earth”, please subscribe to our mailing list by sending us email on firstname.lastname@example.org with title “Subscribe” and put in your name and surname and year of birth.