Day 7 – Cultural Sunday

How could we start a Sunday morning better than with a service? For that we had the opportunity to go to the Berliner Dom. The service was held by Heinrich Bedford-Strohm, the chair person of the German Protestant church (in German: Ratsvorsitzender) and Fredrick O. Shoo, the Archbishop of Tansania. After that we were guided through the magnificent building and could even climb the top of the dome.

In the afternoon we enjoyed the diversity of Mauerpark: with a flea market, food and Karaoke there was something for everyone.

After that we went to the “Mauergedenkstätte”, a place we could witness the Iron Curtain. Thanks to our nice guide we could learn a lot about East and West Berlin. (for more visit: https://www.berliner-mauer-gedenkstaette.de/en/ )

At the end of the day we tried different Lebanese food, so everybody can go happy and satisfied to bed. Or let’s see what else this evening can bring… 🙂

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Day 6: Let’s explore Berlin !

Today we decided to explore the capital. After breakfast we started our walking tour through the highlights of Berlin.

We had two guides, who gave us different information about the history of this city , specially after the Second World War and how the city became what it is now. The new Berlin is diverse, colorful and open minded, and people from all over the world are welcomed in this place.i

We finished our tour at the famous Brandenburg Gate.

Afterwards we went to the holocaust memorial where we learned something about the architecture of this monument and reflected about its impression on us.

In the afternoon we divided into small groups to have lunch together and do some shopping.

Breaks are also necessary so for recharge energy for the evening program we had some cool watermelons, coffee and cake called “Berliner”.

In the evening we split up in groups again. Some went to the sea to go swimming, others decided to make a picnic an enjoy the view of the river called spree and the others went to dance.

It was a long day but in the end we where all happy to have explored so many faces of the city and collected such a great memories.

Day 5 – Cologne and travel day

On Friday we walked powerfully and with lots of expectations to the station of Bonn. With our big backpacks we enjoyed the ride to Cologne in a super modern skywalker train. The highlight in Cologne became the walk of almost one million steps up to the tower of the Kölner Dom after a tour in and around the cathedral. Luckily, we all made it on the top! Finally, we all proudly went back to the station to take the train to the capital. Deutsche Bahn? It’s an ongoing joke. Of course the air condition didn’t work, besides the reservation system was defect. However, we still had lot’s of fun and we are looking forward to the more modern trains in India. Our accommodation in the heart of Berlin is located next to the Hackesche Höfe. Looking forward to the following days and the spirits we experience in the group!

Day 4 – Nature and Wildlife Trip

On our fourth day we visited the Rolandseck wildlifepark.
We took a tourist boat from the center of Bonn all the way down the Rhein to Rolandseck where we left the boat.
On our way we saw different attractions of the area: The former parliament buildings, the city park of Bonn and the “Siebengebirge”, which is a little mountain range near to Bonn. There also the famouse “Petersberg Hotel” is located, the former government guesthouse. “Königswinter” and the “Dachenfels” were also highlights on the boattrip.

At the wildlifepark we saw a lot of typical German animals like goats, ponies, horses, donkeys, highland cattles, deers and sheeps which we could all feed.
Especially the male highland cattle was quite greedy for food because it opend its mouth widely, so we could just throw the food into its mouth.
Apart from the cattle there was one really cute baby goat and a lot of scared deers.
The wildlifepark is located on a hillside at the Rhein from wich we had a wonderful view over the Rhein valley and Bad Honnef, but it was quiet a steep hiking.
To get back home we were able to enjoy a relaxing and sunny boat ride again.

Back at the ESG we directly started to prepare a typical German dish for our guests. Constisting of potatoes, green beans, asparugus, souce hollandaise and “Frikadellen” (Meatballs).
The meatballs and the souce hollandaise were a huge sucess in the Indian group but the asparugus was firstly watched very suspicious but in the end everybody tried it.
The crowning highlight of the meal was a dessert of strawberrys and vanilla ice cream.

At the end of the day we reflected all together back on our time spent in Bonn.
The Indian group surprised us with gifts from India, for which we ar all very thankful. They gave us jewellery, wood elephants and small Indian pictures.

Now we are excited for our trip to Berlin tomorrow.
Sleepy Greetings!

Day 3 – University Visit and Indian Evening

Wednesday morning started with a prayer in celebration of Pentecost.

Defying the rain with our colourful umbrellas we went to the international office of the University Bonn. There we learnt about the requirements to apply for a master program or PhD in Germany.

We continued our walk towards the main building of the university, visited one of the lecture halls, were shown around the building by Jan and marvelled at the old “Schlosskirche”.

Back home again the preparation for the intercultural evening started immediately. With more than ten people in the kitchen Inba chose the traditional way of cooking and made a fire outside.

The evening began with a beautiful Indian dance.

Afterwards we enjoyed dishes from all over India.

Finally, our guest explained us their home country with an interesting presentation.

Now we are going to bed with the head full of Indian music, colours and flavours. And of course, a big smile 😊

Day 2 – Getting new impressions

Today was an awesome day!
Early in the morning we started our second day with a prayer in the Botanical Garden.

After our breakfast we discovered the city of Bonn for the first time with a fun game. While the sun was shining we got to know what HARIBO stands for, visited the birth place of Beethoven, the most famous person of Bonn and enjoyed our view on the Rhine.

After lunch we had the opportunity to visit the families of Alex, Sharon and Michael who welcomed us with delicious cake and coffee. Today we had nice conversations, got to know each other even better, danced, laughed and had a great time. Now we’re going to bed tiredly but with a big smile on our faces! 🙂

Our first day

Meeting for the first time…
After a warm welcome at the train station the students went to the ESG-house,
we enjoyed some snacks and tea and then had time to relax and arrive in their rooms.

At lunch time we ate tasty wraps and rice in the sunny garden.
To get to know each other we played the snowball-game and introduced each other.

Afterwards we had a lot of fun teaching each other some basic sentences in Indian and German and learned about all the different languages in India. Kavita prepared a quiz about India and Germany which we tried to solve in mixed teams later.

Again we were lucky to have great weather in the evening so we had a great time sitting at the campfire and having our barbecue.