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Entries for 'kerstin'

Leçons 15- Il n´est jamais trop tard pour apprendre

Leçons 15- Il n´est jamais trop tard pour apprendre

Grenoble- you have been good. But now it is time to leave behind the breathtaking Alpine scenery and return to my beloved, flat Maastricht which I have learned to appreciate in manners, I did not image I ever would. Four months, to the day, I have lived in Grenoble- a beautiful city in the heart of the Alps. Over the past 16 weeks, I have been a...

Leçon 14- repousser vos limites

Leçon 14- repousser vos limites

A concept that is quite unfamiliar to me (and I assume to most other students in Maastricht) is that you receive study credits for participating in a university sports class. While I knew from the onset of my exchange that Maastricht University would not recognize the credits, I nevertheless wanted to make use of this unique offer. Grenoble is s...

Leçon 13 - vive le vin

Leçon 13 - vive le vin

When I told my friends that I joined Club Oeno - a wine association at Sciences Po Grenoble, I was accused of participating only for good-quality wine. Little did they know that, in reality, I joined for the cheese and the olives that are served with it. Club Oeno is a student association run by students for students. Members, as well as non-mem...

Leçon 12: Car l'amour est partout

Leçon 12: Car l'amour est partout

One easily earns the impression that we live in a time of hostility, hate and indifference. In the news, we learn about yet another attack here, a violent crime there and overall acts of vulgarity. People are portrayed as egoistic utility maximizers that are indifferent to their surroundings and interpersonal encounters. But that is not true. Becau...

Leçon 11: La France- une nation en grève

Leçon 11: La France- une nation en grève

I always thought that Germans liked to go on strike, but being in France has proven me otherwise. Since my arrival in August, I have been victim to the French right to go on strike five times. I kicked my heels when waiting for the bus stop to go to class or did not know how to get home after dinner with friends because the trams simply stopped wor...

Leçon 10- Sometimes, you need to take a break from France

Leçon 10- Sometimes, you need to take a break from France

Unlike most of my Erasmus friends, who spent our week off from university in the South of France or Paris, I decided to go north to visit my boyfriend who is currently doing his Erasmus in Helsinki. After all, love takes you places, right? As I have never been further north than Groningen or the North Sea Islands, I was very much looking forward to...

Leçon 9: Faire la bise – n´est pas si simple comme bonjour

Leçon 9: Faire la bise – n´est pas si simple comme bonjour

Whereas people in Germany (or the Netherlands) shake hands, wave hello or hug (depending on the level of intimacy), French people kiss. La bise is the French way to say hello, to say goodbye, to say thank you. In France, the handshake as a greeting, is seemingly reserved for formal encounters. It comes as no surprise then, that people your age will...

Leçon 8- Le bonheur, c’est une bonne marche au milieu de belles montagnes inconnues

Leçon 8- Le bonheur, c’est une bonne marche au milieu de belles montagnes inconnues

Who doesn´t recognize this feeling of being caught up in our everyday responsibilities? Too often, we are occupied with ticking off our to-do list or busy running from one appointment to another. In the haste of moments like this, we too easily oversee the beauty of life that hides behind the most mundane and quotidian things. I had initia...

Leçon 7- Les sept commandements du pain français

Leçon 7- Les sept commandements du pain français

There admittedly exists this stereotype of French people surviving on nothing but baguette, fromage et vin rouge. Baguette has established itself as a symbol of French culture next to the Tour Eiffel. It is quintessentially French and doubtlessly indispensable for the French cusine. After a couple of months in l´Hexagon, I have come to und...

Leçon 6- Arrêtez de procrastiner

Leçon 6- Arrêtez de procrastiner

We all have one, either randomly collected in our head or neatly jotted down in a little notebook. A bucket list- a list of achievements or experiences we hope to accomplish during our lifetime. I belong to category number two. I possess a little book in which I scribble down notes, ideas, poems or things I simply want to remember. And within th...

Leçon 5: Il n´y a pas de place pour remplacer chez-soi

Leçon 5: Il n´y a pas de place pour remplacer chez-soi

I would lie if I said that my time so far in Grenoble has been a succession of picture-perfect memories and unforgettable days of intercultural exchange. After a couple of weeks in l´Hexagon, I admit that the rose-colored glasses have slipped slightly and reality has found its way into what is supposed to be ‘the semester of a lifetime&...

Leçon 4- Putain : un mot-clé français

Leçon 4- Putain : un mot-clé français

People always say that French is a difficult language. And it surely qualifies as challenging with all its irregular verbs, its exceptions to the rules and its exceptions to the expectations. But there seems to be an unofficial keyword that can be used in (barely) any situation and you are good to go. So, which seemingly magical word am I talkin...

Leçon 3 - J´ai trouvé mon bonheur au marché

Leçon 3 - J´ai trouvé mon bonheur au marché

Barrels filled with olives and tapenade- green or black. Cases full of tomatoes- Coeur de Boef, Cherry Tomatoes, Sunrise Bumble Bee, Romanesco or Green Zebra. Savon de Marseille, bags filled with lavender or handmade basketry deftly laid out. Stalls with Camembert, Gouda, Chèvre or Beaufort. Tart au citron and blueberry tartelettes draped next to c...

Leçon 2- Il y a de la lumière au bout du tunnel!

Leçon 2- Il y a de la lumière au bout du tunnel!

Before starting university in Grenoble, I thought it would be a good idea to discover France´s beauty, get to know the region and meet locals. Where better to go to than the French Riviera, right? Though, I must admit that I would lie if I said that my desire to go there was completely altruistically and solely for the purpose of cultural ...

Leçon1- Contenance

Leçon1- Contenance

Germany- a country at the heart of Europe which is infamously famous for its affiliation for bureaucracy and (compulsive) orderliness. This is nothing new to me as the need for order is a strand running through my DNA. In case I neglected this “typical German attribute” when on exchange or holiday, locals made sure to remind me of th...

Feeling four years all over again

Feeling four years all over again

Let me tell you, biking in Maastricht is a dangerous venture. One sunny evening, I was on my way to UM Sports. I packed my things and hopped on my bike. Little did I know that the alight would be anything but elegant. I cycled up Tongersestraat, entered the roundabout, enjoyed the sun, observed the people that were driving home from work, hit the b...

Europe without the EU? Unthinkable

Europe without the EU? Unthinkable

“We should not begin to speak of Europe first but instead, think of all continents, countries and individuals as standing on equal terms”. In times of Donald Trump and wide-spread populist sentiments it is easy to follow this line of thinking. But it is important remember that being pro-Europe does not mean to be against all others. ...

I´d take a coffee with my literature

I´d take a coffee with my literature

Today, I spent all day at Koffie. After my friends had continued to enthuse about its comfortable atmosphere, I wanted to check it out myself. According to their stories, the vibrant coffee house has turned into a popular alternative to the static library among students. Actually in search for distraction rather than a place to study- I made my ...