by Gaven Trinidad, ’12
“Touch is very important in life. It’s all we have in trying to reach out to another person.” Tennessee Williams
What people from home had forgotten to tell me is that there is an end to a study abroad experience. Without a doubt, I knew that I would have to return to Dickinson College and reunite with my family after graduation while I search for work in my intended career, but never had I expected that saying goodbye to Germany would be so difficult. I even had to say goodbye to Harry Potter, and that was depressing enough (coincidentally, the last film in the franchise was released this past weekend, which also meant an end to my childhood).
Last week was the final week of formal classes at Universität Bremen, and the Dickinson family had already started to return back to the United States; the week before starting with Ethan’s departure. By next week more than half of the Dickinson students would have returned home (Becky, Anne, Sam, and Mel). The last person to return home would be me on August 9th. Then I guess I’m the most fitting person to write this “goodbye” blog entry.
The experience of studying abroad in Germany was more than what I had anticipated. Not only did I study, work, and immerse myself blindly into this beautiful culture through its art and history, but also I made life-long friends along the way. The first was my study buddy, Cara, who helped me practice my conversational skills. We’ve partied and studied together. We would relish in our love for theater and joke about our futures as actors. Another good friend was Lisa, who was always around for good advice and a beautiful model pose for every picture we had taken together. Maria and Katalina, who always there for a good laugh, were two other good friends I had from the university. I called these four girls my “Ruhrgebiet Girls” because they all came from either Essen or Dortmund. And the person who I would miss probably the most would be my now ex-boyfriend, Sebastian, who will begin his studies in theater and psychology at a university.
What made our goodbyes tragic seemed to be the unspoken question: When will be the next time we will physically see each other? Hug each other? Laugh with/at each other? And in a weird way, I felt a bit like Harry Potter, standing on a platform wat-ching the Hogwarts Express leave Kings Cross Station. It was another lesson about being an adult. I had to learn to say goodbye and continue on with life armed with the joyous me-mories I had gained. Hugging them and saying goodbye was not as painful as I had feared.
Germany, you are a beautiful country with a rich history, art, and language. The people were beautiful, inside and out, and I’m happy to have lived in the beautiful city of Bremen. Now I just need some time to clean my apartment, pack my bags, finish my Hausarbeiten, and return to life as a student at Dickinson College.