Sunday, 7 September 2008

Tilburg: First Perspectives

After about two weeks in Amsterdam, I arrived to my final destination and study city of Tilburg. Located in the south of The Netherlands, the city nestles in a particularly green and varied setting, and one can travel from the bustling city centre into the peace and quiet of the countryside in practically no time at all [there are sheep here! sorry, I don't believe I ever saw a real sheep before].

It's a small student-oriented town, with not much clubs, but more bars/pubs, and not much to see; but it is nice none-the-less. My stay here began with the university's [Universiteit van Tilburg: Tilburg University] welcome week, which was well organized; they even picked us up at the train station, and provided transport for our luggage. Welcome week is essentially a set of lectures/workshops, on how the school operates [administrative stuff], and on how to integrate well in the international environment [social stuff]. One of these workshops included a run down on the soft drug policy in The Netherlands; just so that these young eager international students won't get into trouble too soon. The other workshop I attended was "documenting your study abroad"; as if I don't do enough blogging already. There were also some funky, embarrassing games to get you into the mood of things. Of course, it's all coupled with a brain-wrecking series of [almost] daily/nightly parties; with free [university-sponsored] drinks at almost all of the events.

On the rare days that I was sober, I spent time visiting some of the cities sights, churches, and parks [beautiful greenery]. Leijpark was an eventful venue, with a kids play park, lots of trees, lakes, and a huge balloon blow-up that we just happened to witness. I've also started to cook a bit more, and well I think it's improving; so far I've done a "chicken mushroom pasta", "stew chicken", and "chicken in red/tomato sauce", lol.

MY birthday was spent here this Saturday with, naturally, a huge IMMIT party. Not everyone was here but it turned out to be great; with Trinidadian samples like sorrel, and sugar cakes, and 75% puncheon rum :) and other international stuff that people brought from home. Afterward we went to the Onnela club of Tilburg: Phillips and returned home at 4:30am.

Altogether it was an eventful introduction into Dutch society and culture, now the hardest part comes: to get into study mode and prepare for my thesis and internship. :S

For more pictures see:

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