Finally! After 13 hours flight (with 7 hours spent by sleeping, 2.5 by watching running man, and 3.5 by eating) i arrived in amsterdam. The flight was enjoyable, i sat beside a woman from den haag (or the haag). She said she was having a holiday in Indonesia.
The first thing that i noticed, people were super tall. I was like a dwarf. And all of them spoke very good english. I would have no problem!
I was afraid i would be banned or discriminated because i wore hijab, but i wasnt. The officer was nice. He asked me the standard questions, like what i did in netherlands, for how long, and what i studied, and asked me to show my invitation and recommendation letter and that was all.
The airport was really big. It had 30 luggage belt with one belt was as big as my campus basketball field. They even had Victoria Secret store outside the terminal.
I was picked up by a student of UMCG, the university i will do my exchange. To go to groningen, the only comfortable and close way was by train for 2 hours ride. The price was 26.7 € which wasnt cheap compared to Indonesia train with longer destination. Appearantly, there is discount card if you live in Netherlands. And if you are a student, you can even get a special price and discount. You can choose between gratis weekday ticket or gratis weekend ticket and outside that time, you get 40% off. And remind me, what was the benefit of being a student in Indonesia?
My pickup was really nice! She told me she had to ride on her bike at 5.15 in the morning, and then took a train for 2 hours in order to pick me up at 8.15. Wow. Me? I'd prefer my morning beauty sleep, thank you. She showed me where i could by sim card, (i had to spend 30 € for a sim card! With only 1 gb data plan and 15,5 € phone credit. I figured I wouldnt need the phone credit if I had Internet (and its Netherlands. They wouldnt have internet breakdown, would they?). I could just use whatsapp to call anyone. So i transfered my phone credit to my data plan. At this time, i miss Indonesia. (65.000 rupiah for 14 gb!) And water (seriously, a bottle of water 600 ml costs more than a card box of 1 L milk! 1.75 € and 0.99 €).
We chatted a little bit at the bus terminal and the train. She told me she just graduated from bachelor (or S.Ked in Indonesia). So she still had 3 years more of study which consisted of, 2 years clinical rotation and a half year research, and another half a year to do pre-residential thing (she could choose any department she wanted at anywhere in the world to deepen her knowledge about her department of interest. Things like that). Ah, how convenient!
When i stepped out of the train, the cold wind slapped my face. It was 7 celcius and a little bit raining. But i kinda like the cold though. It was refreshing. From groningen station to my housing, i have 2 choices, either by bus or a cab. She suggested i should take a cab, but i told her i wanted to try the bus. She worried i would miss my stop and i had to walk for hours ( she didnt come with me). Being a stubborn i prefered bus with all the risks.
The driver was nice. He asked me where i live, and told me where the stop. He would even remind me if the bus reached my stop (he spoke a very good english)
Here in Netherlands (not just Netherlands i think), pedestrian has a right of way, meaning they are the king of the street. All vehicles (bicycles, motorcycles, cars and even the busses!) have to stop whenever they spot a pedestrian trying to cross the road. And being my first time seeing this, i compared it to Indonesia, our reaction to pedestrians (yes, i'm also the guilty part) would be "this is no road for weakling like you". Haha
I live in kajuit (its pronounced as Kayāt) so from Groningen station I had to take bus at platform J, bus number 3 and stop at Lewenborg terminal. Now finding the number was the problem and google maps didnt help either. Thank god, i aggreed to buy a sim card. I called my house owner, and she picked me up. Appearantly, i just missed one block.
My landlady was having a meeting (its "pengajian") so we didnt chat much at first. After all people gone, i talked to her and her family. She had been here fpr 2 years to take master at RuG and her husband worked in Netherlands (i forget the name of the company). She had a cute 3 year old daughter. She just went back from hajji, and her mother and aunt are here to visit her. And her mother is from West Sumatera!
I cycled a bit around my neighbourhood in the afternoon, but it rained so i went home, ate my dinner and laid down for a while. Before i knew, the night has changed to morning