- Catherine Socratous
Limassol, Cyprus: 09-12/12/2020
Updated: Jul 8, 2020
First meeting, first friendships, let's sing a song about Europe!
Day 1. Sunday 8.12.19
On our way to Cyprus we had to take the plane. We first got in the plane in Frankfurt then we flew to Zürich and from there to Cyprus. It was the first flight for some of us, so it was especially exiting. Although we had some turbulence we landed safely. From the airport we took a bus to the hotel were our teachers would stay. At the hotel we waited for our guest families. I was so nervous, because I didn’t know how the guest families would be. Honestly, I was nervous for nothing, because my guest family was so nice. After we greeted each other we got in the car. It was unusual for me when the mother got into the right side of the car instead of the left like in Germany. After I unpacked my bags my host girl Danae offered to go to a café with me and meet some of her friends and some of the other Erasmus+ children. I had loots of fun meeting so many new people and it was a great first day.
Day 2. Monday 9.12.19
We had to get up early to go to school. My host mother drove me and Danae. At school Dane quickly showed me her classroom. There is a big difference between our classrooms and schools. The entire school there is open. That means only the different classrooms were a room. The rest was just open. Like in an American motel. Then we went to their sports hall. It was interesting because every country that means Cyprus (Greece), Poland, Portugal, Lithuania, North Macedonia and Germany all prepared a presentation about their country. Then something happened that never happened at our school before the power went out. It was kind of fun because we all got our phones out and turned the flashlight on so we could see better. The power went out because it started raining. I asked Danae about it and she said that they just aren’t used to rain and that’s why the power went out.
Day 3. Tuesday 10.12.19
We got up early again on the third day. But that day we didn’t go to the school, but we went to Nicosia. Nicosia is the capital of Cyprus. The special thing about Nicosia is that it is the only European country that is split in half. Half of Nicosia is in the free part of Cyprus Republic the other half is in the part that is military occupied by Turkey. The city is separated with a Greenline. So, people can walk around all of Nicosia, but they get checked by the different countries. Sadly, we weren’t allowed to go to the occupied side. But we went so close that we could see the other side of Nicosia. At the Greenline we had a workshop where we talked about things we would wish to be happening in Europe and our dreams of Europe’s future. Especially because we were at a place with such mixed feelings, we mostly talked about freedom an equality for everyone.
Day 4. Wednesday 11.12.19
On the fourth day we went to the school again. We had some workshops where we learned more about Cypriot history and culture. We also learned more about the conflict between Cyprus (Greece) and Turkey. Also, we wrote our song for Europe. It is full of our hopes and thoughts about Europe’s future. It was so much fun planning and writing the song. That was our main project besides learning more about other cultures. But the funniest part of the day was when they tried to teach us two traditional dances. Honestly, we must have looked funny. But it was lots of fun trying out that part of their culture.
Day 5. Thursday 12.12.19
On our last day at the Cypriot school we prepared some presentations about important topics in Europe. My topic was immigration. The best part of the day was discussing our themes in small groups with people from all the other countries. It was so interesting to learn about different points of view. And discussing different political opinions about immigrants. We danced again. This time tough it went much better. At least what I could tell. At the end of the day we all sang our song for Europe and recorded it. The best part of the day was when all the students went to eat at the marina with all the people from Erasmus+. We went for a walk after that and just had long talks about how we see the world and Europe from all our different perspectives.
Day 6. Friday 13.12.19
It was so sad when I had to say goodbye to my guest family. After breakfast they drove me to the teacher’s hotel. After our heartful goodbye the people from Germany went to buy some souvenirs for our family and friends. Then we had to go to the airport again. On our flight back we had a thunderstorm. It was beautiful to see the lightning from the airplane window. We were all very sad we had to go. On the flight I talked to my friends from Germany about all our special moments. I would like to thank all the teachers that went with us and helped with the planning. I would like to thank the Cypriots for there extreme hospitality and of course Europe for sponsoring this amazing trip. I will never forget all the amazing talks and the wonderful experience.