It’s hard to believe that I’m back, but at the same time it almost feels like I never left. It’s strange walking around Calvin’s campus again; weirdly strange that people are still doing the same things I left them doing.
I can honestly say that going to Germany this summer was one of the best decisions I made during my college career. I learned a lot and grew as a college student, and most importantly I made friendships and relationships that I would get to keep for the rest of my life. It was such a blessing to be able to go to a foreign place and study engineering as well as German culture at the same time.
I really enjoyed the freedom we were given as a group. Often our professors would take us to an important place or historical location, show us around and then give us the freedom to explore and find our way home. Some of my favorite memories are of looking around for maps and bus routes to find our way back to the hostel from wherever we were. Learning how to use our time well, and figuring out how to budget our money were all part of my growth and independence, and I really liked that I had the chance to experience a bit of guided freedom.
Perhaps the reason I find it weird that things aren’t so different here is because I was fortunate enough to go to Germany and experience the things that I did. It seems silly to think about, but maybe a little part of me assumed that everybody else did too, and everyone else has as much to talk about as me.
I still don’t prepare to get one-dollar bills back as change when I pay for things here. I also forget that sales tax isn’t included in the cost of things here, but I’ll get used to that with time. Man, it feels good to be back!