Germany I

  1. Yes, I went to Germany and it was a really nice place though that is a conclusion after being in Essen, Dusseldorf, and Cologne only. But I need more courage to defeat my desire to watch Prison Break series to start writing about my trip to that Deustchland.
  2. OK,OK. I’ll write it this way, bullet points. Just like notes.
  3. I went to Germany two days after finishing my final exam ever. Two days – it really sounded like I hated Manchester so much.
  4. I went alone, and that freaked everyone out, before I told them that I have a friend over there waiting for me. Strangely, my mother is cool about that (for the fact that I did the way I always did, just told her what I want to do, not asking permission). What these people did not know is that I arrived in Dusseldorf -Weeze airport at 2320 hour, and had the flight delayed and I missed the last shuttle bus at 0030 to Essen (where my ex-schoolmate is), I would have to sleep in the airport. Again. The fourth time.SP_A0165
  5. Fortunately, the flight was even early – but I still have to wait for the shuttle bus departing at 0030. No, my friend did not wait at the airport for me, and I would not even want her to do so – that ‘loser’ airport (as my friend described it), though named Dusseldorf -Weeze airport, is 70km away from Dusseldorf , and 84 km away from my friend’s place. Very misleading indeed. Ryanair is definitely making lots of money out of this.
  6. The immigration officer was stern-looking – he checked my passport long enough to cause annoyance to those behind me in the line, finally asking what I was doing in the UK (I think he could not read it clearly from the UK Visa) and why I was there. Since he was somehow good looking (remind me of those in the WWII movies really), I forgave him for making me nervous.
  7. Funnily, the lady at the information kiosk thought I was a Moroccan. That’s the hijab, and maybe because on the same night there is an usual flight from Morocco. She showed me VCDs of songs and films in Arabic – ‘lost and found, I thought it would be a surprise for some Moroccans if I offer them this upon arrival)
  8. Stupidly (oh man, I am testing how many adverb I know now), for this trip I did not even bring a phrase book as those who are travelling to non-English speaking foreign lands would normally do, and I don’t even know even a single word in Germany. Even ‘thank you’ in Deustche. I am sorry to those who taught us Germany words during assemblies back in secondary school. All went in vain.
  9. So I waited for one hour before getting on the shuttle bus. There were all Germans in the bus, but since I sensed that the couple sitting behind me were able to speak English (target the young ones if you must), and asked them how far Essen is from Weeze : the answer is 50 minutes. Whoa. I will arrived there at 0130 more or less. My dad would be very worried if he knew that her girl is out-of-nowhere (Really, out-of-nowhere, since I didn’t bother to check where Essen is actually on the map at that time) in the middle of the night.SP_A0164
  10. I told my friend not to come and fetch me at Essen town (I don’t think it is a city anyway, correct me if I am wrong), so it is really me alone finding the way to my friend’s place, which is 20 minutes away from the town, probably by cab. Recall that I don’t speak the language, and strangely, my friend seemed not to receive my text – O2 is really unreliable when it comes to roaming. I only managed to tell her that I have arrived by getting online for a while in the airport (at the rate of 6 Euros per hour ) and just wait for me in her room.
  11. Back to the shuttle bus: the girl thought I was Syrian! That’s the hijab again, and it was dark they could not see my face.
  12. The cab driver thought I was a Turk. That’s the hijab again, and the darkness, I guess.
  13. The cab driver was indeed helpful, confirming that the building we stopped in front was the correct building, and there was me trying to figure out how to get in. No room number, and no connection whatsoever with my friend. O2 really *****.
  14. Call it luck, but the Germans do not seem to value privacy. They have this whole list of the occupiers of the building including their room numbers so it was just a matter of pushing the right button to get my friends to come downstairs to get me in.
  15. But the doorbell didn’t work really, and there was this guy who came by and let me in, help me finding the right floor, at gotcha, you should listen to how my friend screamed when I knocked on her door that morning at 0200 – ‘Afni, macam mana kau boleh sampai depan bilik aku dah?’
  16. OK, then the hugs. Twice. It was seven years ago when I last met her. My friend. Khairiah. But then, the seven-year gaps seems to vanish quite easily – I think that was the five years you spent together cursing the school quietly in your heart – she was a prefect and I was, err, in the Dakwah body back then, so you know how everyone actually wore masks in this two student bodies.
  17. Then the gossiping, until we finally slept. The next day : finding my way to Dusseldorf, 20 minutes away from Essen.


  1. Sure aku tergolong dalam golongan yang ‘freaked’ bile kau ckp kau pergi German sorang-sorang..

    dan yg pasti, apapuddin x tergolong

  2. anyway tahniah kerna sudah pulang dengan slmt setelah berseronok, Alhamdulillah

  3. Encik aku_p,

    Anda tergolong dalam golongan separa ‘freaked out’ masa aku ckp aku gi Germany sorang2 arituh. aku sgt annoyed dgn reaksi freak out, but try hard to think that these ppl really care about me so just appreciate it (thus the logic goes to say that ko separa care psl aku..and hence encik apapuddin tak care..hahaha).

    Yep, alhamdulillah, back home, safe and sound. Bukan berseronok sangat pun, more of relaxing myself kat sana – Manchester can be quite consuming, don’t u agree?

  4. Salam Afni,

    wah…panjangnya kaki..he..he..

    Partly I shared your braveness but …partly for a mother of 5 girls, not sure I will be smiling all the way if I found my daughter was alone in the land of nowhere.
    Alhamdulillah, you are now safe and sound.

    SO how was the ‘green and sustainable germany”, any technology can be proposed to our enviromental department back home?

    when will you be back home then? if and only if I want to kirim Yvonne Ridley’s books……?

    Thanks in advance

  5. Ummuzulfa,

    The trick is (let’s hope that none of your daughters know this) ‘ they won’t worry something that they are not aware of’ – that’s usually the case, there is danger somewhere, but as long as my parents are now aware of it, it will be OK. But still, my mother normally gives unexpected response when it comes to things like this, putting high trust in me. Well, of course I expect some sort of opposition from her side when I told her I was going to Egypt for two months, or traveling home alone from the UK, or off to Germany all by my self, but she was cool.

    Germany is, from these four days, not very much different superficially from the UK in term of how green it can be [except for the large numbers of special recycling bins, not only 3, and that I have wasted at least two drinking bottles worth 50 cents by not returning it to the producer] – but after a long discussion with my friend who is doing her Master in Civil Engineering there, we have come to agree that yes, from our study they are very sophisticatedly green in their way of doing things and making things green.

    InshaAllah I will be home around 18-19 July, immediately after my graduation. Yep, sure, no problem with that, just give me the titles I will try to find them for you, UmmuZulfa.

  6. Place where you are studying@working “always” much more consuming than other places in this world – my non-exhaustively theory –

  7. assalamualaikum afni,
    rindu afni lah… btl die jalan2 yeh….syoknye..afni bile balik malaysia ni..nanti balik contactla yiez eh-0173096671. rindu!

  8. salam afni

    “I am sorry to those who taught us Germany words during assemblies back in secondary school. All went in vain.”

    did we?
    hahahaha..aku takde memori langsung seh pasal learning words in assemblies..

    “I think that was the five years you spent together cursing the school quietly in your heart ”

    good one afni!hahaha
    hampeh je..

    anyway its good to know that you survived, safely.alhamdulillah..i wanted to try it before..meeting ebby in australia alone..yet, my friend finally decided to go with me..last minute cancel nak travel alone..hehe

  9. aku_p, theory ko bleh diargue lagi aku rasa.

    yiez, rindu awak jugak! InshaAllah julai ni balik for good, i’ll contact u πŸ™‚

    elun, ade la, bukan pagi2 time assembly ada dia ajar vocabs, kadang2 bahasa jepun, kadang2 arab, kadang2 germany. tp nmpknye ko lagi teruk dari aku sebab tak igt langsung slot tu ade. haha.

    yelah..ko sorang je yg tak ‘curse the school quietly’. pelajar mithali πŸ˜›

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