From Mexico with Liubove
Hello! My name is Liubove, but everybody calls me Liuba. I was born in Mexico, but my parents are from Russia. That is why my name is so weird. For those who want to know a new word in Russian, Liubove means love.
First week in Stockholm
This is the first time I am visiting Sweden and I am planning to travel a lot. Next weekend I will go kayak in the archipelago. This is organized by my corridor buddies. They are very nice. One guy is from India and he knows everything, since it is not his first semester here. Since he is so experienced, we call him old-grandpa. The other people are from Indonesia, Singapur, Norway, China and Mexico. Anam, a very nice guy from Italy in my corridor, helps me with the blog. He helps me with the pictures. He has a very good camera and a drone, which helps take some great aerial pictures and video.
I live in a very nice corridor. We know people from the other corridor on this floor too. I didn’t expect that I’m here less than one week and I already know a lot of people. I had lived in other countries besides Mexico: Russia and England. And it is not so easy to change your life completely, so I was a little bit afraid coming here. But now, after one week being here, I can tell you for sure, this is one of the best experiences I am having. If you doubt taking an exchange in other country, don’t doubt anymore! Especially when you have chosen Sweden as your target country.
About my country
This was a big change for me. Mexico and Sweden are totally opposite countries. Mexico is also as beautiful and I really recommend go there; it has some marvelous things that you can’t find in other parts of the world. For example, do you know that the meteor that extinguished the dinosaurs fell in Mexico? Consequently it has formed some really interesting reliefs. We have a big lagoon of seven different colors because of that.
Or there are mountains of 1 km height that are divided in half, and between them there’s a river. It is beautiful. Also we have some “holes” in the Earth, with jungles inside.
The weather in Mexico is perfect for animal and plant growth. We have monkeys, eagles, panthers, jaguars, toucans, crocodiles, and more. It is crazy! I have seen all the mentioned. We have great beaches and great people. You will feel very well welcomed and will leave with the greatest impression.
It was 19th of August. To come to Sweden I bought a plane ticket of Lufthansa company, from L.A. to Stockholm. There weren’t direct flights, so I had to wait for an hour in Frankfurt. Lufthansa is a very good company, I was sure that there would be no delays and I would get on time to the flight from Frankfurt to Stockholm.
In the plane everybody was speaking German. It was the first time that I was surrounded with people whose language I didn’t understand. I felt like I should learn German right away. The people were very nice. It was a 10 hour flight, so I was standing up every two or three hours to stretch. Even with that my spine started hurting because of such an uncomfortable posture that I was in for so long time. In Frankfurt I walked to the needed gate, it was one of the largest walks that I have done with so many bags and suitcases.
After a while I was finally flying over Stockholm and the airplane was getting ready to arrive. I looked out the window and saw a beautiful view. I was delighted, I felt so excited! I saw all the land surrounded by water, and water surrounded by land. It was so beautiful! I have had several flights to different cities, and they are not even close to such a beautiful view. So, tip #1 : take a sit near the window when flying to Stockholm.
I arrived, got my suitcase, and started looking for the free bus shuttle and the people who were supposed to receive me. I was asking people, went all over the airport like 3 times and then, I finally noticed that I mixed up dates! I arrived one day before the date I had to arrive. It was really funny. I couldn’t believe that I was in that situation. I started to look up where to stay. I found some really nice places, one was literally on a plane and another one was on a ship. It sounded very nice but they were near the airport, and I wanted to be near the center. So I found a hostel, quite cheap but very nice one, it’s called the Generator. I took the city express to the hostel and left my stuff there. After that, I took a walk around the city center. It was beautiful. I am so amazed, so happy that I’m going to live here one semester. Probably I even come back and find work here!
Organized events for new people in Sweden and how people received me.
If you are worried that you will be alone here in Sweden, don’t be worried anymore. I think it is impossible even if you try so. There are so many amazing and fun events organized by the Student Union that I barely have time to sit down and write. And you can meet people everywhere. Everyone is so nice and interesting; you can talk about all topics you want. I even met people in the key pick-up. After the key pick-up I went directly to my corridor room in Kungshamra. I was accompanied with a new friend I have, a German girl, who also lives in Kungshamra. I met people in my corridor room. We are very close already. Every weekend we do something together. One of them is Mexican as me, we get along very good. Next day (Monday) I went to the center with the Mexican girl and other friends. We had a nice walk around the city. Everybody took a lot of pictures. I had my first cappuccino from the Wayne’s Coffee. Very good, I love the coffee here. We saw the palace, took some pictures there.
Two days after, on Wednesday, I went to the center again but with a guided tour, Stockholm Free Tour, with an Italian friend. It was very interesting; the lady who made the tour told us some history of Stockholm. She told us about Queen Christina. It is a very interesting story. Poor woman though, her gender has always been questioned, before and after her death. I recommend you to read about her on the internet. The guide also told us about Charles XIV John of Sweden. He wasn’t even Swedish or knew the language. He was French and served in the French Army when, after some messy political things happened in Sweden, the Swedish people went to him asking him for help and govern the country.
What I plan to do here
My main goal here is to study and take advantage of the experienced professors here. I had looked a lot about Swedish researchers, and I noticed that here they have many projects on neurosciences, which is my field of interest. I know a lot of cases where the horror of neuro-diseases has disturbed families. I know people who suffer epileptic attacks and amnesia. My goal is to expand knowledge about it and get develop some treatments.
My second goal here is to travel. I have two friends that have done their exchange semester here and they gave some good tips on traveling. For people who don’t know yet, Ryan Air is one of the cheapest companies and it is possible to find flights just for a few euros (important note, don’t do connections with this company, it probably will be delayed). A good flight-search page is called kayak, which finds the cheapest flights. The train system is very good in Europe, so traveling by train is also a good idea. And there are global passes which let you travel “free” up to three months, depending on the amount paid at the beginning. These cards are called Interrail for European citizens and Eurail for non-European citizens.
I also want to participate in everything possible here. I registered to some programs organized by the Student Union. I registered to the buddy program to meet more people. There is another program that I would like to join, it is called the ambassadoren program. But I’m not sure if it will agree with my study and other activities schedule. I have some really good ideas that I would like to organize for the exchange people, but I have noticed that the school work is dense here, and unfortunately, I won’t be able to join. But I think I still have an opportunity to organize some interesting activities as member of Student Union and Faculty Club. I will tell you about my achievements next post! Hej då! ♥