A long way from Aus, for the last 5 months I have been calling the city of Munich my home.
My travels around Germany and Europe began in early December, in hope of a white Christmas and a snow filled winter, however this was not exactly the case… Unluckily for me, it was an unseasonably warm winter this year, with the first real snowfall in Munich happening around mid Jan. On the other hand, Luckily for me, my partner is from here and she has been more then happy to travel with me to see some real winter! Together we have slept a night in an igloo in Austria (-20˚C that night…), had a snowboarding holiday with an old friend in Switzerland, and spent New Year Eve in Belin, with temps around -10˚C. Safe to say, I have had my fill of the cold, and am very happy to see the spring starting to warm things up!
Since all of this travelling is far from free I have been surviving of money saved last year in Aus, however to add a little extra spending money to my time here, I have also found an online pet sitting community called PawShake. All you do is set up a profile and pet owners contact you regarding whether they need someone to walk there dog from time to time, or even to look after their pet while they are away on holiday. This has been great fun, and would highly recommend it to anyone who misses his or her pets back home.
With the semester finally starting here in April, I have also had the chance to take an intensive German course for a month in Feb, and I am now continuing that study with a free course through the Uni during the semester. As someone who had no real knowledge of foreign language a year and a half ago, I am happy to report that I can now at least hold a conversation in German, thanks to my partner and many friendly strangers I have met along the way.
Here at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) they have plenty of opportunities for exchange students to mingle with Germans and vice versa, helping each other to learn their languages, which has been a great help so far. Unfortunately, the layout for selecting subjects as an exchange student is incredibly difficult to navigate, so this has still taken a lot of my time even with the semester having already started, but now, in week 4 of the semester, I think I finally have that sorted too… With that process being the only real stress here so far however, life in Munich ain’t too bad at all, especially with German Beer, and when your university has slides instead of elevators!
Robert Dunn – 12033662