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Saying goodbye to Amsterdam

As Josefine's semester in Amsterdam comes an end she reflects upon what she learned and experienced over the past months and shares with us a small but eternal souvenir that will always remind her of her time in the Netherlands.

For the last couple of weeks, I have just enjoyed my last time here in Amsterdam, and I have tried to do as much as possible before leaving. I have been to many museums, and I would especially recommend Fabrique des Lumieres at Westerpark, a really cool digital art center. There is also a light festival in Amsterdam right now, and I went on a canal cruise with my friend to get a guided tour. It was a really lovely experience and so magic to sail around the canals in the evening while looking at these beautiful light installations.

Looking back at my time in Amsterdam, it has been both a challenging and amazing time. First, being away from your friends, family, and the people you love is never easy. But starting a new life alone abroad has also allowed me to get to know myself in a whole new way. I have learned so much about myself, I have grown a lot, and I have overcome many challenges while being here.

Many things stand out from my four months in Amsterdam, but what amazes me most is how I have created a totally new life in just four short months. How Amsterdam can feel like home in this short time. Amsterdam feels like “my city,” and VU already feels like “my” university and not just a place I am visiting. And all the friends I have made here. I really didn’t expect to make these good and close friends in such a short while, and I can’t believe I have to say goodbye to all of this very soon.

I will return to Copenhagen with so much more than I arrived here with. I feel like I have grown so much in these months, and I am a completely new version of myself returning home. I take with me so many incredible memories and a lot of knowledge. Even though I am ready to come home to my friends and family, I will always carry this experience with me. I have made sure by marking this experience with a special little thing:

Saying goodbye

Christmas is near, and everybody is either preparing to go home for Christmas break or going home for good. I am, of course a part of the ladder, and I am slowly starting to prepare for my departure. There is still so much I want to do, and I wasn’t to make sure I get to say goodbye to all my friends here. But as I have previously experienced, time flies by fast, especially when you are a student. So even though I must focus on my exams, it is an important priority of mine to take my time to say goodbye to my friends and say my goodbyes (for now) to the city.

Having exams at the same time as leaving to go home can be pretty stressful. I have exams on December 22 and 23, and I am also moving out and driving out on December 23. My dad is driving to Amsterdam to help me move out and drive me back home to Copenhagen. Having to do exams, moving out, and driving to Copenhagen on the same day is stressing me out a bit, as I would have liked to be able to enjoy my last days in Amsterdam without all the stress. That being said, I look forward to ending my time in Amsterdam with a road trip with my dad, when we indeed will be “Driving home for Christmas.”

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