Clara here with my third and final blog post from Venlo in the Netherlands. Time has definitely flown here, but I have enjoyed it more than I thought and made some of the best friends!
We didn’t do a lot of travelling but still managed to have some adventures. Recently four of us decided to borrow some bikes and cycle to Germany, what could have been a 20 minute cycle actually took us close to an hour as we got completely lost and ended up taking a path through the middle of the forest where we had to climb over trees and everything which resulted in one of the boy getting a puncture! So my advice is look into all the possible routes before taking this on. We did cop this on the way home and found a direct road the whole way back to Venlo, it was definitely an adventure.
We visited Eindhoven which is only a forty minute train journey and is worth going to, its only slightly bigger than Venlo but great if you wanted to do some shopping close by, there is also a huge variety of restaurants and cafes to go to there. We were not great tourists on this day and found ourselves just moving from restaurant to café to bar for the whole day but enjoyed the day out anyway.
Then came carnival and nothing can prepare you for that week! The weeks leading up to it lectures and other students tried to explain this festival and how crazy it was and we had no idea what we were in for we but we didn’t take it seriously and kind of though it was just a more colourful St Patrick's day but we were very wrong! It's five days where basically the whole city shuts down and everyone is off work, school and college. Its constant, parties, drinking, parades and events. I do think I would like to do it again and be more prepared as I didn’t take part in it, like many of the exchange students as we didn’t understand how seriously they take it!
We actually found that we were the ones that looked ridiculous and stood out! But it was still good to experience it and see another countries tradition.
All in all living and studying in the Netherlands was a short but great experience. It was something completely different, the college itself and the classes and also living there. If you enjoy business and have an interest in food and would like a career in this I would say this is a great course to do, it’s a lot of groupwork and requires a lot of extra work outside of class time but very informative and worthwhile.
The exchange has been the best opportunity to make friends and learn about other people’s countries and cultures, there is no shortage of parties and social events so your never bored or have a minute to feel homesick.
Bye for now,