Parks & Recreation: Park Pobedy.

Moscow is one of the biggest cities in the world, and it is known for its pompous architecture and great boulevards. Many of the concrete structures are a reminder of past times which are still vivid in the people’s hearts, minds, and memories. One example of such a structure or area is Park Pobedy, a grand park located in the (South-)Western corner of Moscow.

Park Pobedy, or Парк Победы, was constructed in honour of the country’s victory in World War II or, as the Russians remember it, Great Patriotic War. It’s also where the name comes from – Pobeda meaning victory, so it’s the Park of Victory. It is actually a vast memorial complex that includes many monuments, fountains, museums, and a church, synagogue, and mosque. Every year on May 9, Russia celebrates Victory Day in which this park becomes the centre of celebrations.

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The park at Poklonnaya Hill is set as a reminder that Russia and its citizen suffered a great deal during the war. The area actually used to be the tallest point of Moscow and was an open-air museum to remind of Russia’s victory over Napoleon. The hill was leveled down to the ground in 1987 and has been gradually turned into the war memorial it is today.

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Right at the entrance to the park there is a long promenade that gives a great view over the area and the surrounding city. This big road lined with fountains leads to the obelisk, a war memorial museum and an exhibition of tanks, war planes, and other weaponry. The park ends into a forest.

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The park was carefully constructed, and certain numbers were kept in mind when planning it. For example, the central avenue, the “Years of War”, has five terraces which links to the five years of conflict. A total of 1,418 fountains can be found there – one for every day. The memorial chapel, mosque, and synagogue are for the different religions of the fallen soldiers. The height of the obelisk with a statue of Nike, the Greek goddess of Victory, represents every day of Russia’s participation in WWII (141.8 metres, 10 cm for a day). In 2005, 15 pompous bronze columns that symbolise the main fronts and navies of the Red Army were added.

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What I especially liked about this park is that it is such a huge “empty” space within such a big city. It is such an interesting feeling that you get when walking around in such a massive park surrounded by skyscrapers. It is a mix of feeling secluded from everything but also being in the middle of a huge town.


The Museum of the Great Patriotic War is open TUE, WED, SUN 10:00–20:00 & THU, FRU, SAT 10:00–20:50. The entrance ticket for the museum is 300 rubles (4.30€ or 5.05 USD), or for the whole exhibition area 400 rubles (5.74€ or 6.73USD). The park area is free.

Celebrations in Moscow

After living in Moscow for not even one month I already have the feeling that every weekend there is something to celebrate here. The city seems to be decorated 24/7/365. There are fireworks everywhere all of the time. I actively took part in two celebratory festivals so far, and let me tell you something: Moscow does not do things by halves. Especially not when it’s about celebrating something.

Moscow City Day

Every year since 1997 Moscow has held a festival to celebrate its founding. Actually, the first celebration took place in 1847 to mark the city’s 700 year anniversary. It was voted that the city was founded on April 4 in 1147, yet the celebration was held on January 1. Back then a prayer of gratitude was held in all Moscow churches and the city was illuminated. In 1947 the de-facto ‘Mayor of Moscow’ raised the issue to celebrate City Day again during a meeting with Stalin at the Kremlin, who supported the idea. A new date for the celebration was chosen, namely September 7, 1947. This gave them more time to prepare for the festivities, as post-war Moscow needed to be repaired and poshed up. The celebrations lasted four days and featured a firework (!). In 1987 the City Day was once again revived and it only became annual after 1997, when Moscow turned 850.

Since then it’s always been celebrated on the first Saturday of September. However, this year the festival would have coincided with the Day of Solidarity in the Fight against Terrorism (September 3) so it was voted to move City Day on the second weekend of September. Moscow celebrated its 869th birthday with an array of festivals, events, concerts, and of course grand fireworks at various venues in the city centre. According to the official website of Moscow, over a thousand events were held on 10 and 11 September. Cray cray! The main celebrations were dedicated to Russian films as 2016 is the Year of Russian Cinema (they celebrate something every year – last year it was Literature).

A group of people (and me) went to a place with two stages for music and other stuff (mostly for kids though). The concert area was really huge and there were quite a lot of people who were really into the music. However, Russian Rap (and Dubstep?) is not really my cup of tea, so the music was only so so (for me). Later in the evening we also went to a park to see the fireworks (that were held all over town). Unfortunately, we left a bit too late and missed half of the show. Also, we expected that the fireworks last a bit longer than 5 minutes, which they did not. Still impressive though and there were so many people on the streets! Nevertheless, we enjoyed the night walk and had a beautiful view from a bridge in Moscow. Unfortunately, on the second day we totally forgot that some of the museums also held special events and were for free and instead we went to the Red Square. Due to the Moscow City Day the area around the Red Square was heavily guarded with security checks and everything, but it was nice to see the decorations in the city centre.

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Stage 1 – Russian Rap ;)

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Second Stage

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Circle of Light Festival

There is another annual international festival in September: the Circle of Light Festival. At this festival lightning designers and specialists in audiovisual art from various countries use video mapping to reinvent the architectural scene of the city. Buildings such as the Bolshoi Theatre or the Moscow State University are transformed into screens for large video projections. Another good thing of this festival, besides the impressive 3D projections of course, is that admission is (mostly) free! Naturally, fireworks are also part of the festival. We saw some beautiful projections, but also a few strange ones :D

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As you can see Moscow has already tried to impress me in my first month and I must say Moscow managed to do so. Also, if you ever get the chance of going to a 3D light projection – you should go there. It is such a great form of art and it really does not matter where you stand and how many people there are as the buildings are usually always very tall :) The first time that I saw something like that was in Copenhagen during Kulturnatten (Culture night) where we saw a light installation of “Tolkien’s Universe” at the Royal Danish Arsenal Museum.

Moscow Diary.

So far I’ve been enjoying my stay here in Moscow. I’ve met so many people – both Internationals and Russians, I’ve seen quite a bit from the city already, and my courses have already started. There’s actually quite a lot going on at the moment. But one after the other ;)

University
I was really excited for my university to start, and I have heard so much from the bachelor students already (their semester started 1-2 weeks before the master student courses). Most of the exchange students had (and still have!) quite some troubles with the courses – they were totally different from the ones that got sent out beforehand, so many timetable clashes, no information on the second half of the semester and so on. However, our faculty just handed us a timetable for the first half of the semester and that was it. So actually quite different from the experience of the bachelor students, but also not perfect and it is still a work in progress. I have already sent numerous mails and have had numerous talks with my faculty coordinator that I already assume that she dislikes me. But yeah, that’s Russia! The funny thing is though – one of my courses is already over and I have my first 3 ECTS! I still don’t know yet if my home university will approve them, but yeah. :D

The City
Moscow has turned out to be the ‘perfect’ place for me to be at the moment. It has a great size, and I have always wanted to live in and experience a huge city like Moscow. There is so much to see, so much to do! The architecture is great – I love the mix of Soviet and grandeur. The downside of the city’s massiveness is that all the places are kind of far away from each other, so you really have to carefully calculate your time. One example: my university is only two metro stations away from the Red Square, but you’d walk for more than 45 minutes to get from one to the other. But even when going by Metro it takes you around half an hour, as it takes forever to even reach the actual metro train due to the fact that Moscow’s Metro is one of the world’s deepest. Usually the Metro is always full of people and superhot. I am already predicting that I will get a cold quite often, especially during winter… yay me!

Another not so yay fact is that hardly anyone speaks English. Don’t even think about asking for directions. Most of the time they will just talk in Russian, even though that they know you won’t understand anything that they are saying. Luckily I speak a bit and understand quite a bit, so that’s okay. Also, Russia is one of the cheapest countries in regards to phone plans, so with unlimited data & so on it is pretty easy to find mostly everything online if needed.

People
By far the most important aspect of my exchange are the people. As I live in a student dorm near the university (quite the opposite from my ‘former’ life in Copenhagen I must say!) I am ‘confronted’ with people on a daily basis. Almost everyone on the international floors (we occupy two) is from a European country, except a few Singaporeans. There are quite a lot of French people here, but also Germans, Dutch and Austrians (I think we are 5?). (Almost) Everyone is (or at least tries to be) super friendly to each other, there’s always something going on. It never gets boring. However, the first few ‘dramas’ have already taken place, but that’s just natural in a student dorm with so many people; and you never really have your privacy or a true quiet time.

Also, the university has a great buddy systems, with buddies who are really interested in us and are doing everything in their power to make our stay the best. Pick-up at the airport, holding our hands during official stuff, planning trips, tours through the city, going to special events with us, hockey games for free, and so on. Plus, they set up a language buddy project, so I have a tandem partner who I will teach German and she will work on my Russian. Yay! :)


I can already say that I never want to spend the rest of my life in such a huge place, but for now it is great. Moscow is super interesting and very beautiful. Even though Russians don’t or hardly speak English, most of them try to help you nevertheless. Some of them are really interested in you (or foreigners in general) and want to know more about your country and why you’ve decided to come here. I’ve also learned that Russian bureaucracy is a b****, it sometimes can take up to an hour before it’s your turn at the post office (partly my fault though maybe?), and nothing’s set in stone – not even at the university :D

Parks and Recreation in Moscow: ВДНХ.

Moscow – a city with millions of people, massive roads and pompous buildings. Some of the parts in town still reflect the former communist era of the country, whereas other parts are super shiny. A city of superlatives almost. Even though it is such a big city, Moscow also offers a great amount of parks that invite people to relax and enjoy a little bit of nature. From time to time the parks also mirror the grandness of the country and its rich history. Sometimes I get the feeling that the Russians really want to show off a little bit. But hey, I guess every city or country does or did that at some point ;)

In the short time that I have been here I really tried to make the best out of the ‘good’ weather and went to a few parks already. I assume that doing some exploring in minus degrees will not be as much fun as it sounds…

VDNKh (ВДНХ) – Vystavka Dostizheniy Narodnogo Khozyaystva

On one beautiful not too cold late afternoon we gathered a few people to explore the VDNKh ‘park’ (Exhibition of Achievements of National Economy), which is actually more a permanent trade show and amusement park. It is spread over 237 hectares (bigger than Monaco!) and it was first opened in 1937. Since then it has been rebuilt, expanded, reshaped and renamed several times. The main idea of the park was the creation of several pavilions – one for each republic of the USSR and for each major industry.

Before entering the park itself we were already greeted by the 110 metres tall Monument to the Conquerors of Space, which was erected in 1964 as a celebration of achievements of space exploration. Inside the base of the monument there is also the Memorial Museum of Cosmonautics.

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To enter the park you go through the Propylaea – the central entrance gate. Straight after entering the park you already get the feeling of how big VDNKh is as you see the central pavilion and a great avenue with flower gardens and small fountains.

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The sunset was just beautiful and we had to take advantage of that and made lots of pictures!

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In Moscow there are around 600 fountains, and some of them are in VDNKh. The Druzhba Narodov fountain (‘the friendship of people fountain’) is one of them. Unveiled in 1954 it shows 16 young women, each symbolising a national republic of the Soviet Union.

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We stayed in the park for a few hours and really enjoyed strolling around for a bit. We did not manage to see everything that is in there and we also did not enter the amusement park. It was a very impressive park with so many impressive buildings and I will definitely go there again :)

First impressions of Moscow.

As of today it has been 12 days since I arrived in Moscow, the town I will be calling home for the next few months. So far I have met many people from different countries all over Europe (and a few Singaporeans and Chinese) and my university courses have already started. More importantly, however, I have already seen a few (tourist) places of Moscow and I have walked almost 100km so far :O

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Red Square

The Red Square of Moskau – Кра́сная пло́щадь or Krasnaya ploshchad in Russian – is probably the most famous attraction/place of Moscow, so this was also one of the first places I went to.

The Red Square separates the Kremlin from the merchant quarter Kitai-gorod. It used to be Moscow’s main marketplace, but also a place for public ceremonies and proclamations, also coronation of Tsars happened there. The square officially got its name in the 17th century. Its name has actually nothing to do with the the surrounding red bricks (they used to be whitewashed at some points in time) or that communism is connected to the red colour. The name derives from the Russian word ‘krasnyi’, which used to mean ‘beautiful’ but changed meanings over time to ‘red’ in current Russian (For more  information: click here).

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Resurrection Gate

The Resurrection Gate (also called Iberian Gate) – Воскресенские ворота – is the only existing gate of Kitai-gorod in Moscow, connecting the Red Square with the Manege Square. Its name derives from the Icon of Christ’s Resurrection that was placed above it. In front of the gate there is the kilometre zero plaque of the Russian highway system – a location from which distances are traditionally measured. People also use it for making a wish and throwing a coin over their shoulders. I did that too but I was too fixated on throwing the coin and actually forgot to make a wish :O

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State Historical Museum

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Спасская башня / Spasskaya Tower – Saviour tower

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On the eastern side of the Red square is the location of Russia’s most famous shopping mall – the State Department Store, short GUM (abbreviation of Глáвный универсáльный магазѝн / Glávnyj Universáĺnyj Magazín). The current building was completed in 1893, closed in 1928 by Stalin and then used as the headquarters for officials working on the first Five Year Plan. Shortly after Stalin’s death in 1953 it was reopened and again used as a warehouse. Privatised in the early 90s, it’s become the address for top-end Western retailers. Very fancy I must say!

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Inside GUM

Another very famous landmark of Moscow that is also located on the Red Square is the St. Basil’s Cathedral. Officially it is called ‘The Cathedral of the Intercession of the Virgin by the Moat’, but yeah… Ivan the Terrible ordered the church in 1552 to mark the capture of Kazan from Mongol forces, and it was completed in 1560. The Cathedral survived Stalin’s plan of demolishing it to have more room for plans for massed parades on Red Square, and now it is home to a Museum.

In front of the cathedral there is the statue of Minin and Pozharsky, the leaders of the militia that repelled the Polish invasion of 1612. It was erected in 1818, becoming Moscow’s first monumental sculpture.

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Theater Square

The theatre square – Театральная площадь / Teatralnaya ploshchad  – is a square in the Tverskoy District not far from the Red Square. Its name derives from the theatres located on it (no kidding!): the famous Bolshoi Theatre, Maly Theatre, and Russian Youth Theatre. Apparently, there is also the last standing Karl Marx statue of Moscow on this square, ercted in 1961. On the statue is an inscription reading: “Proletariat of all countries, solidarity!”. Even though it had been proposed to remove the monument from such a prominent point in the centre, nothing has changed so far. So we were still able to see it there :D

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Bolshoi Theatre

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So far I can say that Moscow – especially the city centre – is very beautiful and also very different from the cities I’ve lived in so far. There’s always a lot to explore. I am sure that I will make a few additional trips to the Red Square and I really want to watch a ballet at the Bolshoi Theatre (even though that I wasn’t that impressed by the building itself!).

So if you are interested in seeing more of Moscow and Russia – follow my journey here or on Facebook :) Stay tuned!!

New chapter: Russia.

Roughly one year ago I started this blog journey with a post about my 2-year-master programme in Copenhagen, Denmark. But Denmark was not enough for me – I had to apply for an exchange semester. Lucky me got accepted at the Plekhanov Russian University of Economics in Moscow and so I will spend the following winter semester in Russia.

A few things about the place I’ll be staying for the next few months:
The Russian federation was officially formed on August 24 in 1991. With a total area of around 17 million square kilometres it is the largest country in the world in terms of territory. Hence Russia is covering more than one eighth of  the Earth’s inhabited land area. With around 145M people living there the country is currently ranking on the ninth place. If you look at the density there only live 8.4 people per square km – compare this to Singapore with a density of 19,935 people per square km! Crazy! Russia has 11 time zones, the largest number of contiguous time zones of any country in the world. And it has 14 land borders and 2 maritime borders. Moscow is the capital and has 12.2 million inhabitants (16.8M within the urban area). It is the largest city on the European continent, and worldwide it is #18 (urban agglomeration).

These numbers just show you how huge this country is, so there’s also a great potential there (imo).

Why Russia?
Actually – why not? I kind of fell in love with the language & the culture and I find the country very intriguing. Especially after watching countless of Cheburashka episodes during Russian lessons at high school. So with having the option of Russian as my second language at high school and further continuing the language at university during my bachelor studies I am fairly able to communicate with people. Okay, let’s be honest here – I haven’t practiced in 1.5 years, so I suck at the moment but at least I am not at a total loss…

I always knew that I want to practice my language skills in Russia – whether be it on a language course in Russia, an internship or a student exchange. As the latter seemed to be the ‘easiest’ to organise it was the perfect opportunity when I got to know that I had the option of going there on exchange at my university in Denmark.

And why Moscow?
Easy answer – they had a better master programme than the uni in Saint Petersburg. In addition, the city is big – for once in my life I wanted to live in a really big city. Like really big. :D Plus, it has Putin, but that’s another story.

So wish me luck! But don’t worry, I’ll keep you updated ;)

Catching up: June Edition.

June was a month full of university related stuff due to final hand-ins and oral exams. It was also the month of my sister’s wedding and a week without proper Internet.

June in terms of: Travelling.

In my last blogpost I already wrote about that I had to take one final trip up north to Copenhagen due to my final exams. I couldn’t take a direct flight from Vienna so I had to travel to Munich via car-train-bus and then take a plane to CPH. So exhausting! Unfortunately, I had to do the same when travelling back – but this time instead of driving to my parent’s home I stayed on the train even longer to go to Vienna and visit my bf & friends. 14+ hours travelling was so exhausting… But at least I got to enjoy breakfast with Carina at Munich airport and we drove past Chiemsee in Germany.

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June in terms of: University.

Right at the beginning of the month my group members and I had to finish our last written paper (about Lego and Airbnb, in case you are wondering). Also, we had to prepare ourselves for the oral exams that were based on our written projects. Unfortunately, there was so much confusion until the very end regarding what would be asked and what not. However, both exams turned out to be okay-ish, the examiners were not too bad and we got good pieces of advice for our master thesis. A good end of the semester/year.

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June in terms of: Food.

At the beginning of June I attended a food festival in Vienna. The location was beautiful as it was in the courtyard the town hall of Vienna. I tried a burger from Die Burgermacher, a Burrito from Wrapstars and a famous portuguese Pastel de Nata from Nata Lisboa.

Another food highlight of June was that one time that I cooked vegan for half of my family. They got to enjoy a cucumber-apple soup and a burrito bowl, and they liked it (:

June was also the month where I got to try my own home-grown cress for the first time. I haven’t had cress in years and we kids used to eat it quite a lot when we were younger. So it was a little throwback to my childhood :D

My love for Pizza is not unknown, and due to all the free time on my hands I decided to make some from scratch myself (together with my bf). Delicious, of course ;)

Last but not least, I also need to mention the delicious Pad Thai that I had at Wagamama and the strawberry muffins at Shaneel’s, if you remember my last post.

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June in terms of: Life.

Definitely the most memorable life event of June was my Sister’s Wedding. After 10 years of dating and 1 year of being engaged, she got married to (I suppose :P) love of her life. I wish them all the best (:

This June was the first time ever that I swam in the Danube. Crazy, even though that I grew up so close by it, and it is pretty common in Vienna to take a refreshing swim in the river on a hot summer day. I just never got around to it and I have to admit that I’d rather stay inside in a cool house than broil in the hot sun. But taking a refreshing swim isn’t too bad, I have to admit… :D

At the end of June there’s always a (music) festival in Vienna that millions of people have been enjoying for quite some time now. As it’s at the end of June I have only been there once (or twice?) before as it was usually the week right before finals at uni. No time for fun, eh?! As my exams were over mid-June, I finally got to enjoy the Donauinselfest guilt-free, yay. Gudrun von Laxenburg was definitely my favourite act, Samy Deluxe and Frittenbude were pretty cool too. Also, I got to watch and more or less hear (terrible sound engineering) a few songs of Sean Paul. AND EVERYTHING FREE OF CHARGE.

June 2016 is also more or less equivalent to Euro2016. I am not a huge soccer fan but I like watching the ‘bigger’ games, especially with other people around. Naturally, I had to watch at least one game with the Austrian national team in a public viewing place. Sadly, ‘we’ lost and this was the end for our team for Euro2016. But I never expected them to be any good, so I am ‘officially’ rooting for Iceland and France now. Go either one of them!

The end of June did not mean well with me as everywhere I travelled to in Austria there was a problem with the wifi connection. What was there to do with all my free time when everybody around me in Vienna was studying and it was just too hot outside? And at home – when I needed the internet for scholarship/uni stuff and my blog? Stupid UPC and stupid thunderstorms that damage modems -.- Thankfully, this torment is over now and I am back online. :D

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June in terms of: Home.

After months of studying, travelling and more or less living in two countries (at least for the past two months), I finally (more or less) settled in Austria again (at least until the end of August). However, I’ve already made future travel plans, and big things are planned for the time after August, so there’s a lot going on at the moment. Still, it is good to recharge batteries at home. Enjoy the nature, enjoy the pets, enjoy the family. All the things that I never/hardly ever have in my beloved cities.

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This happens when you try to take a selfie with your dog…

Last time in Copenhagen for this year.

I took one last trip up north to Copenhagen. The last one for this year. I’ve got other big plans coming up which I haven’t told you about, so stay tuned ;) But here’s my last blogpost about the final week of my summer semester.

The reason why I had to be in CPH for another 6-7 days was that I had my two oral exams scheduled this and last week (Thursday and Monday). So last week, I took a car, a train, a bus and a flight to Copenhagen. It was a very exhausting trip but unfortunately the only cheap option available on such short notice (they handed out the dates for the exams two weeks prior…), where I wouldn’t spend hundreds of euros just on travelling .

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My friend Shaneel and her husband Fahad were so kind and offered to be my and Carina’s host during our stay, so we stayed with them for a few days before staying at an Airbnb for another few days. We had such a lovely time with them, even though we had to prepare ourselves for the exams. Shaneel even baked strawberry muffins (just for us)!!

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Strawberry-banana smoothie

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something healthy for a change… :D

But studying and eating wasn’t the only thing that we did while staying at their place. To Shaneel’s dismay, we (Carina, Fahad and I) also watched a few games of the European Championship.

But because we did not want to force too much soccer upon Shaneel, one evening we decided to watch a movie instead. It took us forever to choose one: no horror movies for me, no animation for Carina and no sad endings for Shaneel – which meant no Titanic :O :( Fahad was more or less fine with everything. So we went for The Fly. Scie-Fi / Horror / Romance / Thriller from 1986. It was so much fun and even though I never watch horror movies, I really ‘enjoyed’ it. It was so bizarre and fun to watch,  I’d even recommend it (with a winking eye of course).

I also went to Strøget one last time for one last shopping spree. I didn’t buy that much as I only went to a few shops that we don’t have here in Austria. I also bought a few gifts for friends & family.

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After moving into our Airbnb and even though we had a lot of readings on our schedule, Carina and I spent a whole afternoon and evening in front of the TV. The Airbnb had German TV and there was a baking show on, so why not watch baking stuff? Then there was ‘Shopping Queen’, and we couldn’t resist. haha. Afterwards there was the Austrian soccer match, so we couldn’t just turn off the TV and start studying, could we?! Especially when Ronaldo was missing every time and ‘our’ goalie was keeping everything (or just lucky…). Fun to watch indeed!

Sunday was full of reading and preparing, even though after the exam I thought to myself – why did I even care to read the articles that we were supposed to read?! haha :D

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After the exam Carina, Shaneel and I decided to have one final lunch/dinner together –  a post-exam ‘celebration’. We went to Wagamama. I’ve never been there before but I’ve heard so much about it and I’ve wanted to try it for a long time now, but I never got around to it. It’s a restaurant that offers oriental cuisine of noodle and vegetarian dishes. We ordered Gyoza as a ‘starter’ (turned out to be more like a side dish as the main dishes were served immediately after they brought the gyoza). I opted for my favourite thai dish – Pad Thai. It was really good but too much cilantro (I just put most bits to the side though). I also have to admit that I’ve had better gyoza and Pad Thai before, but still very good at Wagamama! One other special thing about this place is that you get FREE GREEN TEA. And not just any green tea, but served in a beautiful mug (which I really wanted to take home with me…) and it was so refreshing and delicious!

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On our final day Carina and I had to get up at around 4.30 and we even had to order a Uber to take us to the metro as there was no bus driving at that time. So, one Uber, one metro, one plane, one bus, one train and one metro later I finally arrived at my bf’s place in Vienna, after being on the road for 14+ hours. So exhausting. :(

All in all the exams went fine, I’m glad that they are over and that I passed all my exams of the year. I can’t believe that my first year of the master is already over. Time flew by so quickly, unbelievable!

Catching up: May edition.

May was a month of having visitors, doing final work for university, and saying my first goodbyes to places and people.

May in terms of: Life

At the beginning of the month I just got back from a two-week trip to Austria. If you remember from my April chatching up edition – I stayed at home for two weeks due to my sister’s bachelorette party and my own birthday. When I got back to Copenhagen Carina and I went straight to see the last cherry blossoms of the season.

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At the beginning of May two friends of mine came to stay with me for a few days. We had a lovely time – full of sightseeing, beach relaxation and food!

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Another very exciting (?) event happened in May: Eurovision Songcontest! After Austria’s victory in 2014 and the big event in Vienna in 2015, Austrians are kind of crazy about ESC. I got invited to a small ESC-party where a few of my fellow BCM people came. However, despite the craziness of the event, we couldn’t wait for the result and decided to go to a club instead … ;)

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May in terms of: University

May was the month where all my courses came to an end – the only thing left are two group projects that I have to hand-in in the next few days plus oral exams in mid-June. yay. Hence, a lot of productivity was needed, no time for procrastination you’d think… :D But even in times like that there’s always time for cake!

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May in terms of: Food.

Food is a big part of my (I guess everyone’s) life, especially in May as I had to say my final goodbyes to some of my favourite spots in town. Okay, this all sounds overly dramatic, and yes, i will already be back in June and also for next year’s master thesis defense and all that stuff but still…

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Moving out also meant ‘getting rid’ of food products that I still had. I just couldn’t take everything with me in my suitcase :D So I got to eat quite a lot of frozen fruits and oats. yay :)

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Shaneel – one of my friends from BCM ( who also made the delicious chocolate cheesecake that I mentioned in last week’s post) – invited a few people over to her place(including me of course) and cooked lunch. Pakistani lunch! We were all so excited to try the stuff she’d made. She even cooked something vegetarian for me palak paneer (basically spinach and cheese. yum!) which was so damn delicious that I immediately asked for the recipe. I’ll give it a try myself soonish.

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there’s also always time & room for pizza…

May in terms of: Home.

I moved out of my apartment in Copenhagen and moved back home. It’s cheaper and I have to be at home during the next couple of weeks anyways, so it would be a waste having a room in Copenhagen where no one lives in.

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Instead, I got to spend a lot of my time at home with my family and beloved pets in May, enjoying nature & food ;) I guess I had my fair share of asparagus this season…

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Also – hello beloved Vienna!

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my beloved Baklava <3 long time no see! :D

Another very important and exciting thing happened: Austria selected a new president! An election has never been this exciting or controversial like this before in Austria.

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It’s good to be back – even though it will only be for a short amount of time. The next chapter of my (study) life awaits me :) But first, I have to finish all my exams…

Productivity and cake: last week in Copenhagen.

University is (almost) over, summer is (almost) here. But before everything comes to an end uni-wise there was still time for last group meetings, cheesecake and a nice day at the park :)

Team meeting & cheesecake

University is/was coming to an end so we had our last group meetings for this semester in order to be very productive. But productivity was not the only thing that we were worried about… we also wanted to make sure to be all ready and set for the meeting so we had a team breakfast before. Our team meeting was at one of the student dorms in Copenhagen (where Sarah lives and where we also had our International dinner). Sarah made delicious buns, so we had buns with jam and cheese, coffee, juice and fruits. Perfect start for a productive meeting, don’t you think so too?

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But breakfast was not enough for us. Shaneel was set on bringing cheesecake to our meeting. We couldn’t say no to that, could we? ;) Therefore, we treated ourselves to some delicious chocolate cheesecake after we were done with university stuff.

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Frederiksberg Have

The Frederiksberg Gardens is one of the largest and apparently most attractive greenspaces in Copenhagen, designed in the English style with many winding paths, lakes, islands and canals. One day, Carina, Shaneel and I decided to pay a visit to this beautiful garden.

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Frederiksberg Slot (Frederiksberg Palace) is located on one end of the garden, right next to the Zoo. It is a baroque palace, inspired by the Italians, and dates back to the early 1700s. It was used as a summer palace, but also for the king’s permanent residence for a few years. The royal family left in 1852 and the Royal Danish Army Officers Academy moved in a few years later.

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We picked a great day – the sun was out and it was really warm. We walked around for a bit, sat in the grass for quite some time while watching ducks, and enjoyed the day :)

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Homeward bound

My time in Copenhagen has almost come to an end! I have already moved all my stuff out of my apartment and will only come back to the city in mid-June for oral exams. I can’t believe how fast time flew by… :O

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