A Blog by International Students at Leiden University
After struggling for months about whether I should go back to China during the winter break, I finally booked my ticket home. Some Leideners seem to be really good at dealing with homesickness and something like that, but I can never overcome this kind of challenges. In the last winter break, I stayed in the Netherlands and I can say that it’s the worst holiday I’ve ever had during my school life. Because almost all of my friends left the student apartment, I was quite alone and I had to bear time difference and long distance between me and my family in the 6-week holiday. And due to the fact that I did an internship in summer and did not stay home for more than a month, I missed home terribly. Luckily my financial situation was better this year, and no matter what happened, I have already decided to go home. It turned out to be a very good choice for me personally; I became much more motivated and relaxed in terms of fulfilling my school tasks and solving daily-life problems.
Packing up stroopwafels, kruidnoten and other typical Dutch food, I locked my door and headed to the airport. As Christmas was coming, the airport was decorated into a winter fairy tale… I’ll stop nagging you my dear readers, I know pictures are far more interesting!
Oh look! There is a museum in the airport! How nice 🙂
And… I got a surprise present from KLM! I went to the boarding gate pretty late, and my boarding pass could not work properly. I was a little angry at first when they changed my seat from 26G to 4G without asking me before hand. When I was just about to ask the cabin crew, they told me, “Don’t worry! We changed your seat to World Business Class because this flight was over-booked. Stay here, it’s a gift!” So a girl who has been used to the crowded Economy Class suddenly had her first flight in World Business Class. I enjoyed almost everything on board, the comfortable seats, the food, the snacks… even give you travel sets for free! And I heard that KLM is giving gifts for its anniversary; I never thought that I could get one as well. There is Dutch gin in it. The porcelain producer dated back to 1575; coincidentally it was the same year in which Leiden University was established. Anyway, all in all, what a deal and what a lovely present (or present set)!
This is how I work at home.My mom prepared the warmest quilts because she was afraid that I would feel cold in a house that was colder than 10 degrees C. The temperature was low, the weather was cold, but my heart was as warm as newly-made fragrant China tea.
I spent 5 weeks at home; and I can say that it’s the best winter break ever! Home is always a port to stay at when you get tired sailing on the dangerous sea. Tomorrow will be the Chinese New Year’s Eve. Although I could not celebrate it at home, Skype helps. With all the happiness I brought with me from home, I won’t be alone. This is my awesome winter break, and Happy Chinese New Year in advance!
by Xueyan Xing (coming all the way from China; studying at Leiden University College The Hague)