Benjamin Saff: Friends and Traveling

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Benjamin Saff Friends

It’s hard to believe I’ve only been here for one month. I have been able to experience so much already in such a short time. I’ve made many new friends not only in our Drexel group but local Germans as well as other international students. And each person I meet contributes a little bit more to this already rich experience.

Traveling has been a great aspect of this study abroad as well. With my student pass, traveling is cheap and easy around the Mannheim train network. Some places I have got to see so far were the beautiful and old town of Heidelburg, and the historic cathedrals of Speyer. And yes it is true that these places are beautiful but I have come to realize that what is truly enriching about traveling is the intangible feeling you get with the experience. That feeling of wonder and excitement; the idea that you started off in your small town back home and are now half way across the world in a completely new land with its own language and way of life. It really makes you feel unlimited, like the possibilities in this world are endless. That is a feeling like none other and no postcard or Google image search could come close to replacing it.

And really what makes this experience even better is sharing it with great friends. My friend Caro invited me and other friends to her family house in the southern rural region of Germany called Algäu. There we enjoyed many traditional German activities. Caro’s mother was a fantastic cook and every day, multiple times a day, we ate delicious German cuisine. We also dressed up in traditional german clothing and celebrated the Viehscheid. Viehscheid celebrates the return of the cows from their summer pastures in the mountains and is exclusive to the barvarian region. The air was fresh and we had a beautiful sight of the Alps and the countryside. There is a saying the Germans use and it captures my impression of Algäu perfectly: ” Hier ist die Welt noch in ordnung” or in English, “Here the world is still in order.”

More to come…
– Ben

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