I didn’t pay much attention, when my parents were asking me to do all the procedures for getting passport ready before hand, as I have never expected that my passport will come into use in my life. But, unexpectedly I got an opportunity to do 2 months of internship in Germany under Dr. Klaus Baier and an Indian student pursuing PhD, Manish Sinha. I was accompanied with my friend Reshma, as we two were have been selected from our college, NIT Patna, for this scholarship. It was during our 2nd semester exam, that we were informed about this great opportunity. I got really surprised and excited that, I will be going outside India for the first time. And we had less time to organize everything and to reach at Aachen, after the exam. We had to rush with all the procedures, and finally we made it happen.
Our flight was from Patna to Delhi, and then from Delhi to Amsterdam. There we had a halt for around 2 hours. As already been informed, Manish sir had sent his friend, Mr. Christian, to the Düsseldorf airport, since he was busy with some work. We were a bit scared and were thinking of how to contact him and inform him that we have reached Amsterdam and were waiting for the next flight. We tried using free Wi-Fi, but it was not working on both of our phones. Then we thought of a SIM card, which we got for free from the Visa Application Center. We tried activating it at the airport, but the guidance was in German and we were not able to understand. Luckily, when we call the customer care, they tried to talk to us in English and did everything for us. We had 1 euro balance in it. With that, we were able to make the call. Thank God!
At Düsseldorf airport, we were searching for the face which Manish sir has mailed us. But, before we were finding him, he could easily recognize the two Indian girls who were eagerly searching for him. The first German I ever met. He was so kind to us. To our journey towards Aachen by train, he gave us a full view of Aachen and explained many things about Germany and their culture. We were keenly listening to him with curiosity. At Aachen Hauptbahnhof, Dr. Klaus Baier was waiting for us with our entire scholarship amount. He was such a kind person and treated us so nicely. Since it was weekend, we had to wait till Monday to get the key to our apartment that we have already booked. So, we adjusted at some other hostels till then. First day evening, Manish sir came to see us, and we all went out for a walk. He explained each and every thing about how to live here in the coming days. He made us familiar with the routes, buses and the products available in market. Even, we went to the department on that day, and got surprised when I saw the time in my watch. It was 10 at the night, and still the sun was not set completely. Yea! Here, the days are longer during summer.
The second phase
Once we shifted to the permanent hostel, we were busy with our own cooking inventions like, trying out a blend of Indian and German taste, which sometimes came out to be horrible. We had to work in the department from Monday to Friday 10:00 AM to 5:30 PM. Manish sir was there to help whenever we were stuck with something. At the first month ‘July’, department always seemed to be empty, except few students who sometimes comes and goes from the learning room, where we are working.
During that time, we were informed that few German students are coming back from India by August 1st week, after their internship period and they will be working with us. So, we were eagerly waiting for them as we were spending the days alone in the department. Once they were back, they seemed to be formal at the beginning. But, after 1 or 2 days, they surpassed our expectations. They were really friendly to us. I should say that, they were so kind and they made us to experience the exact culture of Germany in terms of food, partying, and many more. Through them we met with many other German friends. They are ones who gave us extremely different and wonderful experiences in our life. We cannot forget all those lovely hangouts with them and will miss you all, a lot.
Now it is time for us to leave. In between, we were able to manage a trip to Switzerland and Paris too. At Aachen, we visited Drielandenpunt, Aachener triepark, Lindt factory, Elisenbrunnen and much more.
And for all this, I would like to thank Dr. Klaus Baier for providing me with the scholarship, Manish sir & Triambak for clearing my doubts all the time, Prof. Ramakar Jha for giving me such a wonderful opportunity and to all our friends specially Marc, Ko Sha & Erik for giving such a beautiful and unforgettable days in my life.