So I have been back in Germany for almost 2 months now… crazy! Sometimes it`s almost as though I never left. Other times I feel like I still haven`t quite arrived. Because we already finished our semester in Bangkok before December 1st, we`ve officially been off school for 3 months now (2 more weeks to go!)
Greatest aspect of living in Thailand? Traveling!
I spent the entire month of December traveling. Right after the farewell party, which the Chula International Department hosted on a dinner–cruise, going up the Siphraya river, on Dec.1, me and my two flatmates flew to Sri Lanka for 2 weeks. We saw a lot (!) of the country, ranging from Colombo, over Sigirya, Kandy, Ella, Tangalle, Mirissa and Galle. It was an absolute adventure and and totally new Asian experience. It almost feels like you`re in India… and the food is a m a z i n g! After heading back to our apartment in Bangkok for 3 days, we left to spend the Christmas holidays in Pai, Northern Thailand. On Dec. 26 we came back to Bangkok to pack our things and move out of the appartment.
Although I would say the month of December was definitely a highlight during my time abroad, we had the chance to travel a lot, even during the semester. Because I study Design and chose a Photography course, that was being held every Tuesday, I was lucky enough to always have a “long weekend” – Saturday, Sunday, Monday. Therefore we left for weekend trips as soon as courses ended on Fridays (which was always around 12 pm). I traveled to Hua Hin, Chiang Mai (twice), Koh Samet, Koh Samui and Laos during the semester. (Not counting the month of December!). I would say the aspect of traveling is a huge factor, when considering studying in Thailand. It is a lot cheaper than in Europe – not even comparable! A bus ride to Chiang Mai (the “Rose of the North”) from Bangkok takes around 12-13 hours and costs less than 10 Euros! You can`t miss the amazing culture and nature, that Chiang Mai has to offer when visiting Thailand. Other than the financial aspect, traveling in South East Asia is very easy–going. Just grab 2 pairs of shorts, a couple of T-shirts and a backpack – you`re ready to go.
University – Chula
For the Design students the exam phase towards the end of the semester was different from the others. We had no written exams, only final projects to present. Our final project in photography was an editorial picture series for example (same concept goes for the Design class). A majority of the work however was done during the semester. In the course “Culture for Communication” we had an essay deadline every 4 weeks, ranging from topics like “Buddhism as a religion or philosophy” to “Comic Art”. In “Business Management” we were split into groups and were given several weeks to work on our individual as well as our group business plan, which was handed in at the end of the semester.
All in all the workload was more than manageable and spread out nicely throughout the semester. Furthermore I found the staff and students at Chula to be very open minded and helpful – no matter the problem, you`re greeted with a smile!
In general living in Bangkok can be pretty crazy in hectic – there`s always something going on. If you`re a person that is rather introverted and keeps to themselves, this city will definitely push you to step out of your comfort zone – in the best possible way! Over time you just learn to “go with the flow”. Regardless of what you are interested in, Bangkok has something to offer for everybody. From night clubs and bars on the Khao San Road, rooftop photoshoots, pool parties, giants malls, amazing street food corners (… actually amazing food EVERYWHERE!) to amazing art, religious culture and architecture – I can assure you, it never gets boring. I definitely left a little piece of my heart in this crazy city.
Kop Khun Kha, Bangkok.