On Sunday, I was starting to feel a bit overwhelmed by this process. Actually, I was starting to feel a lot overwhelmed. I can't say as it was a surprise that it hit me as I knew that it was coming at some point. There is no way around it. No matter how prepared you are, you will hit periods of being emotionally overloaded. I hit. I am so lucky to have such a great bunch of fellow students who live with me in the same building here. We can talk to each other when we are lost and confused or just feeling helpless against all the new information.
It also isn't helping that I seem to be unable to get a good nights sleep lately. I don't know if it is still a remnant of jet lag or if it is due to all the stressors and worry that are going on below the surface. Is it just because I am in unfamiliar surroundings or perhaps it is everything added together. I think that is it.
Another thing that is happening is that we keep on finding about all these additional expenses that we weren't expecting. For example, we have a party that is for all of us and I guess kind of an intro for all the new students. Each class will be developing a theme for their tables and dress. The party is 160kr per person plus whatever costs for decorating and costumes. We will get fed (albeit by a really great chef who runs our canteen) and have a band for a couple of hours. Then we got our book list and that was another 1000+kr. Of course books are to be expected but when you are earning no new income, every penny is incredibly precious.
Next we were told that we needed to get a copy card for our class as well as a personal copy card. On this issue, I was flummoxed. The purpose of the class copy card is that our teacher will use it to make any copies that they plan on bringing in to our class. I have never heard of such a thing. Anywhere that I have gone to school or taught school, there was a budget for the teachers to use for copies that they needed to make for the class. This is in Canada, America and France. We have no idea if our teachers will make copies or how many. Our tutors said that they had each contributed 100kr last year and they hadn't even come close to using it up and so suggested to our class that we do 50 kr each. I worry about every penny that I have to spend but even worse are the kids coming from countries where their whole family has had to save up for their whole life in order to fund just one year's worth of expenses here.
Om Monday, we met in the schoolyard and were then escorted into the assembly hall for a welcome to all the new students for this year. I got to truly feel what it was like to be an international student. Everything was in Danish and I was totally lost. They started the assembly with a couple of songs in Danish. I don't have any idea what it was. Perhaps one was the anthem? I don't know.
Our department principle Ove Outzen
After our assembly, we went to our first English class. This is the class for those who will become an English as a second language teacher. We were all struck by one particular girl in our class. She so didn't fit in. In fact, I dubbed her Paris Hilton. Her facial structure really kind of looked like Paris but she had short hair. She was wearing a black sheath dress and a gigantic gold chain. All class long she was on her phone texting. When it came around to the discussion about our team building activity where we would be going out into nature to play games, she got such a look of distaste on her face. She made snide comments about going out into the woods. We were told that we would have to involve music in our learning and she got all huffy and said that she had signed up for English class not "music." All the other student were looking shocked and muttering to each other. We talked about her all the way home. It turned out that the other English class had a misfit too. Oh the gossip!
There is also a new chapter in the story of the red girl.
Awww. She has been knocked down now. She, apparently, didn't stand a chance.
I love this view when I am almost home.
On Tuesday, we had a guided walk around Haderslev by a historian. He is a retired history teacher so knew every detail about the town. It was truly the way to see it. It took us through area that I had not yet discovered and explained some of those that I had. One of the places that he took us was to the old church in the center of town. I had already found that as you know but he was able to give us further information about it. At one point he had us sit down in the chairs to explain a few things to us. All of a sudden the huge church organ started playing. The organist was practicing for a performance later on. So he had this very haunting and powerful music behind his speech. It just became beyond hysterical to us all and we were starting to fall off of our chairs laughing and so was he. He started playing to the music and throwing his arms up in the air along with his speech. It was so crazy. I think we all had tears in our eyes from laughter when we left.
This guy has his Danish Hot Dog stand on the pedestrian street everyday near the library. Today, we saw him pulling his cart down the street to his location. The dolly that he is pulling it with is motorized but it was still weird seeing this. And it was a good ways until his location. He was right on the street with the cars.
A hemaphrodite statue made by a local artist.
A pottery museum in a medieval building.
I love this! Want it!
I will catch you up with more of my week tomorrow.