I finally made it: I arrived at St. John’s, my actual final destination to study, live and experience the upcoming weeks and months. There were both, strange and happy feelings, when I saw all these lights appearing in the fog, after another eight hour bus ride (of course the bus broke down again – it was the same bus company which I already booked to get to Deer Lake). I won’t give you a more detailed description of the bus ride – if you’re interested in knowing more about it, just read my entries before; it’s all about the same: spaces, emptiness and very few people! But obviously St. John’s would be different.
After I got off the bus I looked for my buddy which should have picked me up and driven me to my home. But because of the changes in my travel plan and the unavailability of any cellphone signal, communication was nearly impossible. It was no surprise that I then couldn’t find any buddy to pick me up… But again I made the experience to meet very nice people. I met a German, Christoph, and another Canadian, Shannon. I shared my cab with both and that at the end saved me my accommodation for the first night in St. John’s – THANKS AGAIN!!!
The next day I showed up at my new home and then met the other exchange students with who I’m going to live together for my time here. After the first visit at school (surprisingly nobody calls it university, just like nobody calls the teachers professors, like we in Germany do) I began to find my way in our quarter and the campus.
In the following days I saw a lot of the area of St. John’s. With other exchange students and many of our buddies,we had a long walk through the downtown of St. John’s. We took a boat tour to see the rocky beaches of our region and visited Signal Hill, the very east point of North America. Unfortunately I didn’t have the chance to see any whales anymore, because the most ones already did their migration. BUT: again the first time of my life I saw eagles, two bald eagles! It was incredible to see these animals sitting on a rock, and one of them flying away 🙂
The day after we visited Signal Hill, a kind of old castle at the entrance of the bay to the harbour, where even big cruise ships are landing. Here you get a very good view of the city but also of the ocean. If you would jump into the water and then swim always in eastern direction, you would directly land in France, Spain or Portugal. Europe is only a stone’s throw away 😉
St. John’s is famous for its very colorful painted houses. An old fisherman was telling me, that the reason for this was the fog on the one hand, and the rare availability of color on the other hand. People wanted to have some colors in this very foggy city and first they only had white color. Then there was red, after that blue and finally yellow, green, purple and so forth. Now it looks like Hundertwasser has painted a picture of an old city in Sweden…