Passau was once for me a host city. It is now for me a home city.
Having a year in advance getting to know the city is quite a big advantage for me.
I knew every famous cafes, stores and nature. I visited every sightseeings, I got used to the lifestyle that is not only typical German, but also typical Passau. I improved my German, I improved my Bayrish. I made friends, I became a member of my host family. I lived here.
However, it was not until I became a student here that Passau became my home city. If there is one thing that is really big in this small city, it is the university. Passau is a university city. If there is a lifestyle that I really yearn to get to know, it is the student life style. Passau is made of students. If there are buildings that I want to wander around the most, they are in the campus. Passau’s campus was rated the nicest campus of Germany in 2009. If there is one reason I feel like Passau is home, it is because I am now a student here. The feeling of totally belonging, like an ugly duckling of Andersen finally realized it was actually a swan for finding its family, I finally realized I actually always wanted to be a student. I love being here.
That feeling was described by my favorite quote in “The Catcher in the Rye” by J. D. Sailinger.
I think that once you have a fair idea where you want to go, your first move will be to apply yourself in a school. You’ll have to. You’re a student—whether the idea appeals to you or not. You’re in love with knowledge.
J. D. Sailinger
To some, the question might appear why did I come to Passau in the very first place as an Aupair, instead of a student? I did not even choose Passau at first, all I thought of was just to come to any place in Germany, so that I can improve my language skills. Just that. In a nutshell, it was not Passau that I chose, but it was me that Passau – the university city that chose me.
When I stayed, land it was. When I left, part of my soul it became.