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Thanksgiving in the dorm

Greetings from Russia. Picture: Anh Tran

Thanksgiving is not usually celebrated in Germany or in Vietnam, where I come from. My friends from Mexico also celebrate Thanksgiving but with typical Mexican culinary. While studying abroad in the U.S, I notice that it is a very important holiday, during which families gather and have a large meal together. The meal typically consists of roast turkey, mashed potato with gravy, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie. It is an occasion to take a moment to give thanks and feel blessed.

This year, my Thanksgiving is a bit different as I celebrated it with students from all around the world at Dutzendteich dorm. We had the option to prepare a typical dish from our countries and share them at the party. In Germany, it was difficult to buy a big whole turkey unless it was special order. So our Thanksgiving dinner had no turkey but more than 20 dishes of different ethnicities, ranging from chicken curry, spring roll, bratwurst, pasta, etc.

We all contributed to the party in some forms, either it was cash (3 euros/ person) or paper plates, and drinks. After everyone tried out the food, we voted for the best dish. The winner could have free drinks at the bar for the whole night.

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Let’s be roomies

Let’s collect a rainbow.

Let’s collect a rainbow.

When you move to another city, especially for studies, one of the major questions is the choice of accommodation. For students there are a few options, like renting a flat or a room in a shared flat, or a room in dormitory. And as a person who has spent all her conscious life with parents and never lived alone before, I can claim that the best choice is the last one.

Warning: the following text is highly subjective and is based on one particular example (so any other experiences and thoughts are welcomed).

Dormitory? Seriously?

Absolutely! Because sometimes the conditions are much better even than in a hotel. First of all, there is a rule that each person should have a separate room or a certain amount of space within a flat. For me it was really surprising, because in Ukraine each person never has a separate room and no one cares about the size of a room and the possible amount of people living there. Usually 3 or 4 students live together in one quite small room.

„It really feels like a big community where each member contributes to the general well-being in their own special way“

So here I have more than enough space. Moreover, if you happen to get a double apartment (i.e. a mini-version of a flat with two rooms) you will also have a cute small personal kitchen, not to mention your own bathroom. The latter ‘ingredients’ were a surprise for me as well. In my country, usually there is one kitchen on a floor shared between many students. Sometimes even bathrooms have to be shared between around 8 people or more. So anything could be better than that. Moreover, here in my dormitory you also have a shared kitchen on each floor which usually is free and ready for use. And it is, of course, cheaper to live in a dormitory than in a flat. For example, if a one-room flat would cost you around 300€ per month in Erlangen, the price for one room in a dormitory could start from 150€ per month (in my case it’s about 230€). Weiterlesen