Real Spring

Finally...!!! Real Spring is coming. The weather is nicer and warmer now. Temperature slowly climbs up around 15 grad Celcius and could reach 20 sometime. I hope it keeps rising in the following months and reach 30, so I would feel like home.

Surprisingly, the weather starts to change when the summer time or daylight saving time applies in 30 March! I guess people have been calculating this phenomenon carefully…

But Bremen is Bremen. Clouds are part of Bremen inhabitants, so having cloudy day is normal in here. But whenever there’s a day without clouds and the sun shines brightly, people will come out and enjoying the sun. Sunbathing is one of the favorite activities; and since my skin has becomes lighter during winter, now I can be a sun worshipper anymore :) It’s time to tickle my melanin from its hibernation time.

My Class

My course is an international study, so people that study there comes from various places in the world. This is how my class looks like:

video

My German Must Be Terrible

During a cold windy day, I have to wait for my friends in a bus stop. To avoid being freeze, I run to a nearby McDonalds for having hot chocolate.

Well for ordering in a restaurant or cafĂ©, I use to speak in German. And so far, I have no problem with that. So I ask the waiter for Hot Chocolate in German. He then goes to prepare it for me. But when he comes back, he comes with… Chocolate Sundae Ice Cream!!!

Gooosh…. Is my German so terrible?

Germans Expect You to Speak German

In Indonesia, if Indonesian people see a foreigner, they start to think that they have to speak in English to the foreigner. And this could create some funny situation if the foreigner can speak Indonesian, because we’re not expecting it. That’s the paradigm in Indonesia: foreigner means speaking English.

In Germany, it doesn’t matter if you’re foreigner or not, people expect you to speak German! Probably for them, foreigners should adapt. And the result? Sometime I still surprise that people talk in German to me. I am a foreigner, I don’t have to speak local language…

English in Germany

As a developed country, of course German people have to learn English from high school level. So theoretically, German people should find no difficulties in speaking English. But, that’s not the case. In Germany, everything that comes from abroad is translated into German. For examples: movies, novels, TV shows… everything! So it’s not that Germans can’t speak English, they just don’t use to it!

As a result of this condition, I sometime end up talking in English while the German keeps talking German. Because I can understand German in general but I can’t speak it; in the other hand, Germans can understand English but not use to it. But somehow, we can communicate!

Wremen, Cuxhaven and Bremerhaven

No, I don’t mistype it. It’s Wremen not Bremen. It’s just a small place in Cuxhaven. According to Wikipedia, Wremen is a municipality while Cuxhaven is a district.

I went there for excursion study under Coastal Geomorphology course. We’re visiting tidal flat, ex-salt marshes, and dykes. It’s a very nice excursion especially the weather is friendly. It’s a bright sunny day.

First we have to struggle in muddy coast. Sometime we got stuck, sometime we can slide on it. Nobody got fall down, but surely our pants are a bit dirty. Me, I got water in my right boot.

videoTidal Flat Pilgrims


Then we go to dykes that build for protecting coastal community. The salt marshes that present before become prairie.

At the end of the journey, we visit Bremerhaven, a port town near Bremen. Nowadays, this town wants to be the biggest container port in Germany. The tidal flat areas are gone replaced by concrete flat. Hey, I am not against it. I just have a nice video presentation about it.

video

Presentation

Although sometime I have to make presentation in some courses, but it never graded. It’s just a part of exercises. But there’s one particular subject called ‘Presentation’ where the students have to make presentation and graded.

The topics for presentation are provided, but student can also choose its own topic. In this case, I go with my own from my previous working experience regarding coral reef status in Aceh after the Tsunami.

During presentation, the student is given 20 minutes to present and then followed by questions session. Since all the classmates trying to be nice to each other, they won’t ask anything or just asking simple things. It’s your supervisors who will ask you tough questions. After 10 minutes of questions session, you’ll be examined by the supervisors. And at the end, the supervisors will comment on your performance and graded it.

I feel like joining American Idol cause I have to choose a topic, present it, and then graded. It’s like choosing the right song for you to sing, then sing it in your own style, and at the end the judges will comment about your performance. Sometime the judges like it, sometimes they don’t. In the end, it’s a matter of taste. What matter the most is how you feel when you present it, are you comfortable with it or not. And of course, the audience’s reaction. If they like it, then you’re successful. Cause it’s them who’ll buy your record not the judges. In case of presentation, if there’s a person tells you that he/she can understand your presentation clearly although he/she doesn’t have background on it, then that’s all that matters. Cause, that’s what presentation is all about, to communicate your idea.