Saturday the 16th we left Augsburg early in the morning. While I wanted some time to just sit down and think about everything that happened for the past two weeks, we were on the check-in line for three hours, rushing through security, and ran to our gate since we almost missed our flight. In a blink of an eye, I was on the airplane back to the States, didn’t even get a chance to take a look outside the window for one last time. Laying back on my seat with airports in my ears, I felt the heavy gravity pulling me down as the plane took off. I smiled, telling myself being part of this trip was one of the best decisions I made freshmen year at Pitt.
“Was it fun? What did you learn?” I can already imagine being asked by those kinds of questions countless times after I get back. From the site visits, to interacting with the German students, to sightseeing of infamous buildings and beautiful medieval-style towns, and to a history lesson at the concentration camp. I really did learn a lot.
BMW is more than a name, more than a car, it is the history and future. Continental is sneaking up behind the back to take over the future of automobile industry, watch out! KUKA is showing the world the power of future robotics technology and how they can be generalized into daily life. They are not taking people’s jobs, they are helping society to create more highly skilled and less boring/dangerous jobs. SGL will become a pioneer in developing more carbon products and the use of carbon in daily life by sticking to “environmentally friendly” and “lighter but stronger”. H&K showed the world the power of German Mittelstand, small and medium-sized enterprises, and how they survive in the midst of large corporations.
Enough with the companies, what about Germany itself? Everytown has its own unforgettable history and story. German students really separate their professional life and personal life really well. When it’s time to work they work when it’s time to break they break. Their work doesn’t just meet the standards, it goes over. For example, Jani changed our finished power point, inserted animation and made the slides looked more organized and presentable. There should absolutely be no J-walking in Germany. Everyone (both drivers and pedestrians) follow and obey rules. The German students are very friendly and smart. They try their best to help you and love holding intellectual conversations. History is a very important part of the German culture and something they treat very seriously with.
There are many more and I’m not going to list them all. It was truly two weeks with extraordinary experiences. In a sense, two weeks is short but long enough to make good friends and be reluctant to leave. All the places I went I want to go back again, all the food I tasted I want to try it again, all the people I met I don’t want to say farewell. It’s goodbye, just another term for see you soon.
After take off I felt my eyes slowing closing. My Plus3 Germany trip came to an end, but my journey and adventure with Germany have just begun.