I have arrived home in Germany safe and sound. I’m already missing my friends in Debrecen but am super happy to be reunited with my friends and family. I spent a great first day back home having my favorite lunch (vegetable soup) with my grandparents and parents and having cocktails with my best friends.

For the extended weekend, I will go camping with a couple of friends. I am quite sure I will think of this song when teaching them how to say “Egeszsegedre”. Everybody using the free days for partying and relaxing as well: enjoy!

This music video has been produced by international students at Debrecen University in spring 2015 and become quite pouplar among Hungarian and international students, teachers and club owners. Keep up the good work, Iranzo ;).


Spending free time in Debrecen

This blog post is part of a series of several posts aiming to give advice to those who are planning on studying abroad at Debrecen University in the near future. You can find an overview of all pots here.

Debrecen offers numerous opportunities to spend your spare time. Many pubs, bars, cafés, restaurants and leisure facilities only wait for you to explore them. Make sure to check them out. After 100 days spent in Debrecen, those are my personal favorites:

Debrecen activities for free time fun

Cry because it’s over

“Shouldn’t you be used to saying goodbye by now?”, a friend recently asked me. “There’s no need to cry”, another one tried to comfort me. In my mind, I added that good old saying “Don’t cry because it’s over but smile because it happened” to the latter statement. I giggled. Next, I let my tears flow. 

I don’t mind crying. Not all the time, of course, but it’s a great relief once in a while. I can hardly think of a way to display my emotions more sincerely than by crying. What’s more beautiful than crying tears of joy in a moment of perfect happiness? What’s more relieving than crying when you’re feeling blue? Last but not least: What lets a bond of affection grow stronger than crying together and comforting each other?

Crying goodbye Debrecen Friends

“No tears, only smiles we will remember! See you soon. Like. Tomorrow. And then some other ‘tomorrow'” Gunda Z.

I just cried past night when I had to say goodbye to my Erasmus friends. “I’m not going to cry at my farewell”, I had told myself before. In the end I will make an effort to meet those who matter to me again very soon. Ergo: No need to cry. Those I will not keep in touch with have probably only been companions for that short period of my life. I’m thakful for the memories we share.

However, I didn’t manage not to cry. We had some drinks. The karaoke machine played a song after the next. Aidana fullfilled Iiris’ wish and performed “All of me”. My friends and me stood in a circle around her, arm in arm. Iiris and I would be leaving tomorrow, most other people within only a few weeks time. Aidana’s song got to me. I started to cry. My friends and me comforted each other.

Cause all of me loves all of you.
Love your curves and all your edges
All your perfect imperfections.
Give your all to me, I’ll give my all to you.
You’re my end and my beginning.
Even when I lose, I’m winning
Cause I give you all of me
And you give me all of you.”

Living and studying in Debrecen has been a very intense experience for me. My friends both in Germany and in Hungary have been by my side at all times. Sharing experiences and memories draws you closer together. I am very greateful for every single one of them. That’s why I can doubtlessly say: I will miss my Debrecen friends. A lot!

Although I have been abroad several times before – even to more distant places and for much longer periods of time – I don’t think I’ll ever get used to saying goodbye. And that’s a good thing! “You only realize what you had once you’ve lost it”, is a much quoted saying – because it’s true. I don’t lose my companions only because life parts us as long as we make an effort to keep in touch. New media makes it easier than ever. But still: each farewell feels like a little loss.

Treasuring memories and making new ones

You say goodbye to your dear ones and a soon to be past part of you life. At the same time, you looking forward to a new, exciting though maybe somewhat frightening future part of your life. You’re leaving behind a certain routine and dear people. You’re going to encounter either old friends or make new ones very soon. Saying goodbye is an incredibly ambivalent feeling.

That’s why I cried about it. I cried tears of thankful joy for countless moments of perfect happiness throughout the past 100 days. I cried tears of sadness for leaving my friends in Debrecen. I cried because it’s over and I cried because it happened. The tears washed away whatever pain was left and engraved marks of memorable moments in my heart. They make room for new emotional memories to make in the future – together with my dear friends all over the world.

Having fun with ESN Debrecen

This blog post is part of a series of several posts aiming to give advice to those who are planning on studying abroad at Debrecen University in the near future. You can find an overview of all pots here.

ESN Debrecen is doing a great job to make international students feel welcomed and at home, to keep them busy, to give them chances to interact with their fellow students, and last but not least to make countless new friends and memories. That is why you should not miss to become part of that great community and to join its activities.

  • Like ESN Debrecen on Facebook.
  • Become member of the numerous Facebook group for current international students studying in Debrecen.
  • Check your E-Mails regularly.
  • Get in touch with your buddy. Every international student is matched with one ore more Hungarian students about a month or two prior to his/ her arrival to Debrecen. They will help him/ her to find his/her way around, to settle, sign up for classes and show them the best bars and cafés.
  • Get an ESN-Card an receive discounts in many shops/ bars.
  • Buy a Hungarian SIM Card from the ESN members to keep in touch with your new friends.
  • Last but not least:

Join the ESN Activities

Quote of the day (#8): Lasting a lifetime

Today, I am going to quote myself. I wrote those words only a couple of days ago while evaluating and reflecting upon my Erasmus semester in Debrecen, Hungary. I am writing this post while I should actually be packing suitcase. I didn’t think this was ever going to happen when I first arrived here, but I am super melancholy right now. Great memories made lay behind and great adventures and challenges lay ahead of me. I am incredibly excited to be surrounded by my family and friends back home in Germany again.

However, wherever you go, you leave part of your heart. I will most certainly miss living right next to a beautiful park, studying in a pretty university building, having brunch, lunch and dinner with my friends, going to Erasmus events, traveling a lot (at least I’ll stick with that one) and spending precious moments discussing our lives. Thank you for everything, my dear friends in Debrecen. Sziasztok!

View from a mountain top in Pécs, Hungary

Enjoying the view and treasuring the moment in Pécs, Hungary.

Studying abroad is an experience producing relationships and memories that can last a lifetime.You might struggle to keep in touch with your friends back home. You re-evaluate your interpersonal relationships on numerous levels. You build new friendships. Some of those might last a lifetime. You learn a new language. You learn to find your way around a formerly unknown surrounding. You get a chance to grow academically. More importantly, you grow personally. You might face some obstacles – and will most certainly overcome them. And most of all, you learn to enjoy every moment of your life, remember the importance of appreciation and to treasure the memories and friendships you make for they might last a lifetime.” (Laura Konieczny)

Living in a dormitory at Debrecen University

This blog post is part of a series of several posts aiming to give advice to those who are planning on studying abroad at Debrecen University in the near future. You can find an overview of all pots here.

If you applied for or already got accepted to study in Debrecen, you might wonder how you will be accommodated in case you chose to stay I a dorm. Several dormitories are available to live in. You will most likely be admitted to the dormitory that is the closest to the campus you will be studying on. You can find out which one that will be here. As you can read on the university’s website, the dorms and rooms differ a bit from each other. To give you an impression about it, whatsoever, I will now give you some information about the Kossuth Lajos Dormitory on the university’s main campus.

Each room is equipped with

  • 1 Bed + bed sheets + bedspread p.P.
  • 1 or 2 Drawers beneath the bed
  • 1 Cupboard p.P.
  • 1 Desk and book shelve p.P.
  • 1 Long shelve p.P.
  • 1 Desk light p.P.
  • 1 Internet cable p.P.
  • 1 Big hanger to dry clothes on

The shared kitchens on each floor  are equipped with:

  • Water boiler
  • 2 ovens with cooking plates
  • 1 sandwich maker
  • 2 microwaves

The kitchens are getting cleaned once a day.

Things to bring/buy living in a shared dorm at Debrecen University

  • Cleaning Wipes (my room was quite dusty when I arrived)
  • Plate
  • Fork, knife, spoons
  • Cup
  • Mug (if you bring your own mug you pay 10% less for every hot drink in many coffee shops)
  • Cooking pot
  • Cooking pan
  • Kitchen towels
  • Other kitchen supplies you need (can opener, trowel, spatula, …)
  • Ear plugs (you can hear gatherings in rooms nearby and outside quite well)*
  • Eye mask (rooms don’t always have curtains)*
  • Comfy shoes to wear at the dormitory
  • Washing detergent, anti-discoloring-wipes (since you can only wash twice a month you will most likely wash “a colorful machine”)
  • Basic cleaning utensils (bucket, mob, cleaning soap,…)

*I never needed those, though. I found loudness and brightness to be bearable.

Further useful information

  • The bed sheets are changed and the bathroom is being cleaned every other week.
  • Washing machines are located in most of the dormitories’ basements and can be used for free twice a month. They work fully automatically, that means you don’t need to add washing detergent.
  • In addition to your room key, you get an electronic check card you always need to check in and out at the dormitory.
  • Each person can bring up to three persons to his/her room. They need to register at the reception and leave their ID as a refund.
  • If visitors do not leave before midnight, they need to pay 1000 Ft (3,30 €).
  • That means if you wish to have friends stay overnight, it costs 1000 Ft. per Person.
  • You can buy many things you might need during your stay in Debrecen second hand on Facebook pages like Sales between Students.
  • You can buy nearly everything one could think of in order supply a household (kitchen utensils, cleaning supplies, groceries) quite cheap at the Goods Market or One Euro Market (Csapó Utca 6/ left hand side between Kossuth tér and Forum)

Finding your way around in Debrecen 

This blog post is part of a series of several posts aiming to give advice to those who are planning on studying abroad at Debrecen University in the near future. You can find an overview of all pots here.

Walking Debrecen with a friend

It’s always a pleasure to go for a walk with a friend.

Walking is a good way to get to know the city, have a look at nice buildings and also gives you a daily workout. The walk from the main building and its surrounding area (Faculty of arts, humanities, living sciences, Kossuth dormitory) to the city center takes about 30 minutes. Walking to the Campus Hotel and the nearby swimming pool takes about 15 minutes.

If you don’t feel like walking, you can take the tram. There are two lines. Number 1 (blue) takes you from Egyetem (University) to the city center (Kossuth tér) and back. A single ride costs 400 Ft (1,30 €) per person. A ticket for an entire month costs 3.300 Ft (11 €) for students with a valid international or Debrecen student identity card. It is valid the first of a month until the 5th of the next month and can be bought at the ground floor of the university’s main building.

You want to explore more of Debrecen? Check out some free time activities to conduct in Debrecen. This post will be online from May 20th on.