I am SO excited that I’m writing a blog post from AUSTRIA! I have been planning and waiting for this since Summer 2014, so life is so surreal right now. I’ve only been here a few days but absolutely no complaints. Here’s what’s been happening recently:
I arrived in Vienna, Austria on Thursday, February 11th with 2 of my new roommates from Laurier and my dad. I was so beyond anxious to get here, so actually arriving at my new apartment was the best feeling. I left Toronto Wednesday night, and arrived in town the next evening. I stayed in a hotel the first night because I wasn’t sure if my apartment would be ready.
My first reaction to Krems was definitely how small it was. Coming from Toronto, it will take some adjustment to realize that everything from shopping, school, bars, grocery shopping is literally steps away… No more TTC. We arrived around 8:30 pm and to our surprise, everything was closed! Only a few restaurants stay open THAT late, which again, very surprising. So, my dad and I set out on a walk to emerge in Krems cuisine and see what I had really gotten myself into. The downtown/main street area is what you see in a movie- cobblestone paths leading to beautiful, old buildings. However, we were the only ones of the street. This is mainly because Krems is a university town and schools don’t commence for the Spring Semester for a week or so more now. I’m sure the streets will be filled as soon as school starts. Also…I knew that this town would be very German speaking but did not realize that EVERYONE would be speaking it and every single thing would be in English….Asking for an English menu or trying to speak English is like asking for chopsticks at a sushi restaurant- you know they’ll help you out but you know they’re judging you. I thought I had a basic understanding of German but turns out I forgot a majority of it. From what I DO remember…it’s actually pretty exciting speaking another language!! And not that intimidating. It’s fun being able to practice, even if its just a few words or so. I feel I make it super obvious about being a tourist and not being from here because as soon as I get the opportunity to say a word that I know, I over exaggerate and yell it a bit (a new language is exciting ok?!) Just imagine me paying for groceries and smiling ear to ear yelling out DANKE SCHON. SO satisfied I remembered something from German 101.
The next day, I moved into my apartment. I have a beautiful apartment so close to everything! Like I said, something I’ll need to adjust to. It is a loft style apartment. DISCLAIMER: Most Euro apartments apparently don’t come with driers because “it’s not the Euro way” AND no oven- only stove top! Cooking is going to get super creative this semester. There are 6 rooms in my apartment (some including bunk beds..) and I live with two other girls from Laurier and three girls from Macau, China.
After getting set up in my new room, we set out to discover. We headed straight to the Danube River which was BEAUTIFUL. Krems is so clean and the people are friendly. From the river, we walked through the town Stein which is just as beautiful! Everything is very connected. I also got the chance to see a few buildings from my new campus! It’s very modern and close to the main street, and also beside another university in Krems. Sorry to everyone in Toronto with the -30 something weather they’re somehow surviving through, but Krems feels like spring! Clear skies and sunny everyday.
I am so happy with my choice in country and town so far. I was definitely intimated by the slight language barrier at first, but if I made it THIS far, I don’t think there can be much more difficulties I can encounter. I love being able to wake up and just WALK and see something new! Just exploring, having an open mind, and not being afraid to travel somewhere unfamiliar is a good mindset to have while somewhere new, and I hope I am able to stay true to it.
Until my FIRST adventure,