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  • David

Getting ready for Amsterdam: David

September is around the corner, and so it is a fresh start for new students. How are they preparing for it, saying goodbye to family and friends? Get some packing tips from David!

Photo: Chenango Lake, and the view from my cottage

How will you say good-bye to your current city?

There’s a vantage point from an outlook atop the old stone quarry, in the western hills of Norwich, NY, that lends itself to a panoramic perspective of my home city. That’s where I’ll say good-bye, privately, to the city that raised me, and then took me in again this summer, as I prepared for life abroad. After that, either at the bar or out on the lake I’ve been living on, it’ll be mostly hugs and handshakes, one last long swim, and a few dinners that run late into the night.

What has meant the most to me, however, is the time I’ve been able to spend with my brothers this summer, so I suspect the majority of my good-byes will be with them.

Photo: My brothers, my city

What are you packing to Amsterdam?

The closer the date of my departure, the less inclined I feel to pack much. Three pairs of pants, two pairs of jeans, ten tee-shirts (five long, five short) and some sweaters. I’ll bring my swimsuit and my stovetop espresso maker, a few scarves and hats. I have some trinkets I picked up in Spain that’ll look good on my desk, and though its heavy, I’ll probably pack my World Atlas of Wine too. Outside of that, other than my laptop and camera, I figure the rest I can buy or barter for abroad.

What are your plans during the introduction week?

First things first, I’d like to meet all these people I’ve come to know via email. The application process has been so much more than simply getting into school and I’ve relied heavily on my international student advisors along the way. I hope to meet them, thank them, and ask a few more questions about the practical matters concerning my bank account, Dutch ID, housing and health insurance. If, after that, I can map out my route to school, find some water to swim in, buy a bike, and meet some professors and peers, I’ll feel pretty well on pace to hit the school year in stride.

Your experience about Amsterdam

I’ve been to Amsterdam twice now, once after Paris, and again after Iceland. The first time caught me completely by surprise, greeted as I was by an unmistakable sense of Dutch hospitality. The second, coming from a far more remote part of the planet, was almost entirely an experience in cosmopolitan splendor. How, I still wonder, does so much happen in so compact a city?

It’s nice to see you


Old friend

With all your water

And your whimsy.

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