Moving to Bonn
Moving to Bonn just seemed natural to me. Why I don’t know but as soon as I got here it felt like a hometown to me. I had never been to Germany as an adult before and I was looking forward to it. Even now that it is relatively cheap to fly to anywhere within Europe, Germany had never been on the top of my list. Then I found out about an internship in Bonn that I could do as part of my degree course in Dublin. I saw this as a great excuse to finally go to Germany.
I arrived in Bonn in late January. Before getting the internship in Bonn, I honestly had never heard of Bonn, neither had my friends. My initial expectations of the Bonn were a busy city, seen as it used to be the capital city of Germany and that the UN has a lot of its headquarters here. However when I got here I found it to be a more relaxing place, which I didn’t mind at all.
Everywhere in Bonn is within walking distance. There is of course a great transport system in place if you don’t feel like walking everywhere. As is to be expected of German transport, it all runs on time. There is an underground/subway, tram line and buses. With a combination of these I found it very easy to get anywhere in Bonn. I was able to get a JobTicket through my internship, which enabled me to get all the modes of transport for a fee each month. Students can get their own ticket through their Uni, which is immensely useful. It allows you to travel anywhere in the state as well. I also got a crash course in German bureaucracy when I got here. Between my internship and registering with the city, I must have written my name a million times! I know it all benefits me in the long run but there must be a quicker way!
After about a week in Bonn, I felt like I knew my way around. At least in the city centre anyway. I find when I’m in a new city that just going walking around where you live can really help settle you. Also it gives you a chance to find useful things such as supermarkets, banks and, of course, bars. While I still don’t know the street or strasse names very well, I at least know how to get around.
A great thing about Bonn is that it is situated on the Rhine. The Rhine is one of the most important trade rivers in Europe, if not the world. It also offers up some great scenery. Unfortunately when I arrived the weather took a turn for the worst. It was well below freezing many mornings and snowed a few times. You can see the difference of a week, weather wise, in the photo below.
I also got to experience Carnival here. I did another blog on it in detail so just click here to read all about the craziness!
Something that I was really looking forward to doing here was taking a lot of photographs. Photography is a relatively new hobby for me and I really enjoy it. Bonn has a great blend of old buildings and great landscapes that I find interesting. The weather hasn’t been too kind to me but recently it has gotten better and I’ve been told its great in the summertime. Luckily I will be here until August so I cant wait for the sun!
I’m staying in a student dorm so getting to know people was a little bit easier. I share a kitchen with 4 other people so I would have contact with them. I met people in the dorm who introduced me to other people who then introduced me to even more people. It pays off to show initiative and try to do something with new people, whether it’s go to a bar for a drink or offer to cook them a meal. With a lot of international students in Bonn it’s a great chance to get to know other cultures and find out what you have in common.
In the end I found that going out and being active in a new city can help with coping with a new city. A trip to the tourist information centre is always a good idea even if you hate being considered a tourist. They will help you find your way around and give you information about interesting things to do in your area. I found them to be very helpful and don’t worry if your German isn’t great as they speak English very well. Boredom can be a main reason behind why people get homesick.
I’m liking my stay in Bonn and look forward to the rest of my time here.