The last week and a half has flown by. With the last full week of classes and then finals, I was really busy with homework and projects all the time. Meanwhile, we were all trying to fit in every last thing we wanted to do and see before we left. Last Thursday we took the train about an hour away to a big lake where we spent the whole afternoon. The water was pretty cold, but there were sand beaches and we just hung out and tanned all day. On Friday I went with the rest of the econ class to Frankfurt for a meeting with the European Central Bank. This was a really cool experience, and really the first big, modern, Western European city we had been to yet this trip. As a bonus, it was all paid for by IES! The presentation was really interesting, and we learned all about the current European financial crisis. Some of it was still pretty confusing for me, and I wish we had learned more about this in class, rather than just focusing on the Balkans and Turkey. Despite the confusion, I still think it was a worthwhile trip. We were supposed to go much earlier and see the ECB as well as Deuchebank, but with the change in travel plans we ended up being in the Balkans during that time. I’m really glad we were able to reschedule at least part of it! We spent the rest of the day shopping and touring around the city, and came back to Freiburg in the evening.
The last week was a flurry of finals and packing and goodbyes. It was weird leaving my room, as it had just finally begun to feel like home. On the last night IES took the whole program out to a really nice dinner where they made their final speeches. Afterwards, almost all of us were able to coordinate going out together, which is a rare occurrence. We wanted to go to the fanciest club in Freiburg as a last hurrah (and also because its free for students on Thursdays), but by the time we got there the line was too long and we decided we didn’t want to wait. We ended up going to another club downtown, which worked out just fine because really we just wanted to spend the time together. It was hard saying goodbye, I made a lot of close friends on this trip and I’ll miss the whole group. I hope someday I’ll be able to see some of them again somewhere. Almost all of us left Friday morning, some going home and some off to more European adventures. I’m meeting my friend in Berlin and then going to Greece for a week, so I still have a little time before my trip has to end!
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<p><span style="color: rgb(29, 29, 29); font-family: Arial, Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal; background-color: rgb(237, 237, 237);">Susanna Bowers grew up in Seattle, Washington before moving to the small town of Walla Walla to attend Whitman College. She is studying economics, and is very excited to get a more global perspective through the European Union coursework and field trips. At school, she is an intern at the career center and an active member of Kappa Kappa Gamma. In her free time, you will likely find her eating thai food, listening to country music, or hanging out with friends. She has been to Europe before, but only for short stays and never to Germany. She can't wait to be able to explore new places and meet all sorts of interesting people this summer!</span></p>