Thursday, June 28, 2007

Present of Gerben

Of course, Gerben is a present on himself, but to celebrate our first-year together, we went out to dinner yesterday. The actual date was already 3 weeks ago (5th of june), but it was a bit difficult to celebrate it at that day.

During this dinner he surprised me with something beautiful. Look for yourself :)


Feels weird, but at the same time so normal.

My boyfriend next to me (although I really had to get used to it. Sometimes I woke up and thought: who is in my bed and why? before I realised that I was home, and it was Gerben)

The clean kitchen

The empty house (quite boring though)

The cold weather(I already get used to it again)

Riding my bike (ouch)

Still aggressive traffic

... and much more...

The trip

The 20th of June was the day for me to go home. At 7 am I took the cab to the busstop where the bus to the airport would arrive. Quite tired, as I only slept for 4 hours (again) the night before. This time not because of the heat, but because of my trip home of course. The day before I had gone to the beach for the last time, this time at Mount Olympos (Nea Pori), together with my friends Mieke, Marijn, Marielle, Mark, Levinia, John and Labis. Unfortunately, when we wanted to take the train back, it appeared to be 2 hours late!! So instead of coming home at 8:30, with enough time to pack my suitcases, I was not home earlier than 10:30, so I couldn't go to bed earlier than 2. To get up at 6 again, because I really hate it to be in a hurry and stressed out.
Luckily M, M, M, M & L were with me, otherwise I would never have reached the airport. My luggage was namely around the 30 kilos, and that was only my suitcase! My handluggage existed of a suitcase of 10 kilos, a laptop and 2 little bags for my purse, etc.

M, M, M, M & L at 7 to accompany me to the airport: how sweet :-)
Of course it was very quiet at the airport. I was one of the first to check in, so that was also done in 5 minutes. My luggage was exactly 29.4 kilos, so that was perfect! The woman behind the desk didn't think so:
"You have to many kilos, you are allowed to take only 20 kilos with you."
"No no, I have send an e-mail with that question as I have stayed here longer than a month and they told me that I could take 30 with me."
"No, on your ticket it says 20 kilos"
"I know, but this ticket is rebooked, so it doesn't give the right information"

Then she decided to call someone and after ten seconds, I didn''t have to many kilos anymore.

So we waited for one hour, before I would go to my airplane. I was still a little nervous, as I didn't know how the reactions on my laptop and hand luggage would be. Everything turned out to be fine, so it costed me only 10 seconds to go through the security part.
And then the real waiting started. Waiting for boarding, waiting in the airplane for the departure, trying to enjoy myself during the flight, as it would take a little longer than I'd expected. It had to go to Athens first, so I would not arrive at 12, but at 2:30. A little bit later, and more time before I would see Gerben again. So during the flight I have tried to make some nice pictures out of the airplane.

The part with epanomi on it
The beach of Perea
The 3 fingers of Halkidiki
Far, far away: Mount Athos. Have I seen it after all ;-)

And so, after a flight of more than 4 hours, with a little stop in Athens, where I had to get off with all my luggage, and on again after half an hour, I arrived at Dusseldorf!! Where I of course flew into the arms of Gerben.

I have to say that the first day felt quite weird. Back in your own country, with other people than you've seen the last 4 months and with half the temperature of the one in Greece. I have been really cold until yesterday. I have worn more clothes on monday than I would normally wear in the winter (monday was extremely windy with a temperature of 15 degrees). But things start to become normal again. I have already made new plans, and the sun has just decided today to shine!

First step on Dutch ground

Gerben and me :)

Tamara and me (look at the color-difference :-p)

Suzanne and me (and her good grade for maths, which is great of course)

Sunday, June 17, 2007


It drives me CRAZY... I can't sleep in the evening, in the morning (fortunately, I also do not need that much sleep anymore, because of the sun), but also if you don't do anything, you sweat like crazy. Therefore, I've made a walk to the upper city yesterday night, with MArk and his sister. Took some effort and sweat to get there, but it was worth it! Much more wind, cooler, it was so good. I've bought an ice cream and after that we walked down again. We've also taken the bus for a bit, because my foot hurted (and still does) because of the callous on the back of my foot. Quite annoying...

The good thing is that I do not have to walk that much anymore, because school is finished!! Wednesday, yesterday and today I have gone to the beach, as there not much else to do here, when it's so hot. On friday night, we've been to Mount Olympos with the whole Matsi family, because there would be an Erasmus Beach party. It was a good party, although a bit less than we'd expected. We had rented a room in a hostel, which was good for me, because at 3 o' clock, I was really tired and went to bed.

So the saturday, we went to the beach (it was only 50 m from the hostel) to sleep some more. However, at 3 we had to leave, because huge clouds were coming, and just when we walked to the busstop, it started to rain really hard. This rainfall of course took only 10 minutes, so when we went into the bus it started to become dry again.

Elise, Lizzy and me, on the day of their departure :(

We've already had some more thunder and lightning. Last wednesday, when Elise and Lizzy left, there was a huge thunder, and I have made a beautiful picture of a lightning. It took some pains of my arm, but it is worth it, don't you think?!

Only 3 days left... I'm so glad that I decided to go back earlier. I don't know if I could have endure this heat for ten days more...

Thursday, June 14, 2007


"This is very, very good. You really have a writer in you. I would say it's almost professional"

Thus the reaction of my teacher on my featurestory (or personality profile) that I had to write for this course. Personally I thought the story was no good at all, but while listening to it as she read it aloud, I felt more and more confident about it.

I had interviewed Mark about his life, Greece, study and future. The total number of pages that I had written down his answers on was about 8. From these answers, plus of course my own interpretations and opinion I could write this story. I will publish it, as I have received my grade.

At least my self-confidence has got another boost.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Only 9 days and....

  • .... I will see Gerben again!!
  • .... Tamara of course too!!
  • .... and all the others who I haven't seen for 4 months
  • .... I won't have to pay 5,80 to do my laundry anymore
  • .... I can use my bike again (hope I can still manage to ride one)
  • .... sharing a dirty kitchen is finito
  • .... I can eat bread with Hagelslag, without worrying if the package is already getting empty
  • .... surviving the Greek traffic is no longer a day-filled process

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Greek traffic

Before I go home, I really have to write something about the Greek traffic. It can be described in only one word:


but in that case you won't get an idea of it.
Let's start with the Greek mentality: In general, Greek people are very relaxed, easy going people. Never in a hurry, always (too) slow. If you walk on the pavement you will always know which people are Greek and which are not. Just count the people that you pass by, because you think they 'walk to slow'. Waiting in a line of at least 6 people at the supermarket is a normal thing and if you are trying some clothes on, it is possible that the sales men lets you kindly know that he is going to close the store. Which is in the middle of the day: time for a siesta!!
So far the xαλαρa character of the Greek people.


You walk on the streets, because you go to school. From the left, the right, the front and the back: really from every side you will see cars coming at you. If you try to cross the street, it is hardly possible, because all the cars (their drivers) think they are the most important.
There are lots of one-way streets, but you still have to look both ways, as none of the Greek people cares about the signs that are at every corner of the street.

Maximum speed limits are known, but especially in the nights, when the roads are deserted, some cars are driving at least 80 km an hour. Inside the city.

Crossing the junction when the traffic lights are already red for 5 minutes, zebra crossings that are everywhere, but it wouldn't have mind if they weren't, cars parked on the pavement everywhere, cars parked double on the streets; I have seen it all.

But what still scares me the most is that if you finally cross the street, because there are no cars in sight, suddenly a car with crazy speed comes racing around the corner like there is none, and almost hitting you, because you're on the middle of the street (as you thought you could finally cross). And still yelling at you, that you're not allowed to walk on the street, but that you should walk on the pavement. Which is full of parked cars.

Only 9 days left...

Thursday, June 07, 2007

The end is near...

Three down, 2 to go. Almost all my courses are finished now. Last monday I handed in my essay for Globalization and the Arts, yesterday we had an oral exam for International Relations and tomorrow I will have a discussion on my essay for Globalization and the Arts (how is he going to do that in a full class, where everyone has a different topic?).

The only two writing things left are the PersonalityProfile for Interviewing and the research paper for Media Management.

But there are of course also the fun things! Last thursday there was a concert of a Greek soft-rockband. I like that kind of music, so I went there with Peter, Flip and Mark. At the concert itself, we lost Flip and Peter quickly, but we found Kirstie and Andy. The music was not what I expected it to be, but it was fun. Being in a croud and listening to the same music. I wish knew the songs thought...
The friday after that, there was a Goodby party from Antonio (Spain). The party has continued for a long time, but I went home at around 2 (I think). I was too tired...
The saturday after that, we went out to dinner with half of Matsi. However, as we are in Greece, we ddn't go there earlier than 10 o' clock, and I was home at 2:30. And lots of more parties to come in the near future (good bye parties though).
A couple of days on the beach is of course what I have in mind as well.

Everything goes so quick all of a sudden. All the people living on my floor are disappearing (read: going home) one after the other. Claire, the first one, is already gone for a couple of weeks. Next monday Susie and Lubi will go home and immediately the day after Flip will leave to go back to the Netherlands. The Thursday after that Lizzy and Elise will be gone as well. It's going to be so empty... :-(
Luckily, there are still people downstairs. Peter will stay until the 18th, Marielle until the 21st, Andy/Kirstie and Mark will leave not before the 2nd (although there have been some chages last week). Mieke, Marijn and Levinia will spend even more days. They will not go home before the 5th of July!!

So from next week on, I will have my breakfasts and dinner in the downstairs kitchen again.

And.... only 13 days left before I go home! I will see Gerben again, after full 4 months. I could have never imagined before that I would miss him so much and that 4 months is actually quite a long time if you miss someone.

He is also the main reason that I'm not sad going home. I also will leave when already half of the people that I've spent time with are gone. Next to that we will go on holiday together for 2 weeks. One week camping in Denmark and 1 week of sailing.

I'm excited....
My mood at the moment