If you are not a “UWCler“, you’re probably wondering what the hell a Zero-First-Year Meeting is supposed to be. In late June, the German UWC Network invited all year ‘20 and ‘21 (that’s me yAY) UWC students for a preparation/get-to-know-each-other/reflection weekend on Burg Lohra (somewhere in the middle of nowhere in Germany).
Even though they told us to pack liGht and bring a smaller rucksack because the castle we were going to stay in was about an hour’s hike away from the train station, I - as the hiking-expert that I am (ironic cough) - didn’t really take them seriously and brought literally everything that fit into my ridiculously large hiking rucksack which was probably designed for long distance hikes anyway… Long story short, I was as out of breath and sweaty when we finally arrived on the top of the mountain (others might have described it as a hill but seriously.. it WAS a full-grown mountain!!) as I’d last been like nEVeR. It was somehow bonding though, so if anyone from the UWC Network is reading this: keep the hiking a tradition!
By the way, these randOm cApitALiZaTioNS are just to annoy you.
When we finally met all our 2nd-Years and the facilitators, it was all so overwhelming and there were so many people out of the sudden that I didn’t know who to talk to or what to do really. But in a good way. Anyways, people soon started to form college groups and since none of my 2nd-Years were there and my German Co-Year was busy having fun on her exchange to Japan, my dEAreSt FreNCh-bUdDy Éline was kind enough to invite me (standing-lonely-in-the-corner) over to their table (UWC-USA) and I got to know her super dope Co-Year and 2nd-Years who are both very lovely (and talky, omg haha).
As I don’t want to give away too much about what exactly we did, I’m just gonna say that the days were filled with great group activities, long-night talks under a sky full of as many stars as I’d never before seen in my whole life and really delicious & vEgAN food. I don’t wanna rub it in your face, but I’m vegan and I was quite positively surprised when I found out just how many vegans there were. Also, what else I really appreciated about the structure, was that we were given a lot of freedoms and the facilitators were also quite chilled and flexible (in a sense that they adjusted the planned activities to the group and what we wanted/needed at that time).
After the weekend, us Zero/First Years left with our heads filled with memories of intense late night discussions with unforgettably great people, some more, some less sure about their decision to attend a UWC, some (me for sure!) even more confused about what to expect, but everyone with an awesome tiny “sneak-peak“ feeling of the UWC spirit, knowing that we would all go into totally different directions and have totally different experiences, only to meet each other again exactly one year later…
[To Be Continued...]
(How poetic, Masha)
Anyways, that's it from me for now.
Lots of Love / LOL,
PS: I loved the time down there and every single one of you guys <3