Happy May Everyone! Summer is fast approaching, which means our trip to Münster is quickly coming to an end. No one can really believe that we only have about three weeks left. Time truly has flown by. Saturday we are headed to Munich for the week and when we come back we have a week of classes before finals. After that, some students are flying home right away and others are staying a few weeks longer to continue their travels.
This past weekend we had an extended break due to Tag der Arbeit, which is similar to Labor Day in the U.S. A lot of students took advantage of the few extra days off and traveled. Some destinations included: Newcastle, London, Ukraine, Eindoven, and Edinburgh. Other students stayed in Münster and enjoyed spending time with their host families.
As for me, I went to London with Kia to meet Erin (who is studying abroad with the Malta group). Unfortunately, since Münster does not have a very big airport, if you want to fly somewhere cheaply, you have to take a bus or a train to one of the larger airports. Kia and I set out for Cologne Thursday night to board our Friday morning flight. I can now say I have successfully completed my second all-nighter in an airport this spring. I do not recommend doing that, but sometimes you have to do what you have to do when you are a student on a budget.
London was surprisingly large to me. I have always known it to be a big city, but it takes a solid 25 minutes to get from one place to another on the famous London Tube. If you ever come to London, I do highly suggest getting an Oyster card if you plan to use the Tube more than three times a day. Unlike other cities, you cannot walk from place to place because of the sheer size of the city.
On our first day in London, we went and saw the London Eye. We did not go in as it was absurdly expensive. We also attended a service in Westminster Abbey which was a very unique experience. Westminster Abbey was definitely one of my favorite parts about the weekend. Do, however, be aware there are lots and lots of tourists there. Naturally, we also wanted to see Big Ben. However, it is currently in scaffolding and is completely unrecognizable. We knew that beforehand, but it was still sad not being able to see it.
We also went to the Science Museum. I will have you know that the museum had a section dedicated just to mathematics. I thoroughly enjoyed spending my time reading all about how math has been applied throughout history. I am not sure Kia was as thrilled as I was, but she let me nerd out for a little bit! We did also go to the Natural History Museum. This museum was beyond incredible. We only had a little time there before it closed, but I think we all could have spent a couple hours walking around in that museum. This is a highly recommended stop but, because so many people had the same idea, it was challenging to get in.
Lastly, we stopped to see the changing of the guard. Well, when they tell you to arrive early they are not kidding. I think every tourist in the area plus some London natives were surrounding Buckingham Palace. It was crazy. Although we didn’t arrive very early, we were lucky to find a spot where we could mostly see what was happening. This was a neat experience and we enjoyed the music the British soldiers played during the ceremony.
Other than the weather being less than ideal, London was a fun stop. I think for several members of the group that was the last independent travel before the end of the semester. Stay tuned to hear about our group trip to Munich.