This year, ICC took place in Zadar, Croatia and I was proud to be part of it once again, especially because I got the opportunity to co-tutor the workshop “Traveling Abroad”!
The entire German delegation was booked on a Lufthansa flight from Frankfurt. Therefore, I took an ICE train from Hamburg to Frankfurt airport on Sunday morning in order to arrive on time.
At Frankfurt airport, I was picked up by the German staff members, some of whom I already knew from past ICCs or other events. When the group of participants and staff was gathered, we checked in, gave up our bags and went through all the rest of the airport procedures, before we finally boarded the plane.
Honestly, I can’t remember how many times we evnetually showed our passports when departing from Frankfurt and after our arrival in Zadar. When the ICC volunteers picked us up at the airport and dropped us off at the hostel, we had to hand in our passports again and the hostel staff kept them for the time that we spent at the traditional welcoming ceremony, where I met a lot of good old friends again who also returned to ICC.
After the welcoming ceremony, we went back to the hostel and had an extra tour through the city of Zadar (we got a little lost on the way and Evi called Juliane for some backup 😉 ).
As you probably noticed above, there was a longer distance to walk between the hostel and the restaurant and the university next door where most of the camp activities mainly took place. I’m not sure about the exact walking distance anymore, but I think it was about more than a kilometer and it definitely took us at least 15 minutes to walk.
The first day started as usual: breakfast – as always – from 7:30 until 8:30 (took place at the student restaurant “Barbacan”, close to the university). The assembly meeting started at 9:00 and groups of different nations were formed to tour the buildings and its surroundings and to get familiar with the computers, configuring the accounts.
The lunch break was between 12:00 and 14:00. As I already pointed out earlier at ICC2016, the disadvantage was that, due to the distance between the university and the accomodation, it wasn’t really worth it going to the hostel for a few minutes after lunch just to depart again a few minutes later. I only once got a lift to the hostel because I had a slight headache and I couldn’t stand the noisy environment anymore, so I skipped lunch to go to the hostel for some space and a power-nap. There were a few communication issues concerning how to pick me up again, but it worked out in the end, so yay! 😉
The first two workshop sessions on Monday afternoon and Tuesday morning, as well as Friday afternoon and Saturday morning were filled with compulsury workshops; mine were “Networking” and “Studying Abroad”. Boring? No it isn’t, for god sake! 😛 From my past ICCs I can tell that information change in a way to become more up to date. Furthermore, it might also be a different tutor or co-tutor who makes things a little more interesting, focussing on other certain topics. As for networking, you always find new ways to create personal networks with people which are worth it sharing to the group. As for studying abroad, it was a nice refreshing of information to perhaps take advantage of in the future.
After dinner from 17:00-18:00, we took part in the leisure-time activities we were assigned to, which were: jamming-session, horse-riding, tandem-biking, a tour through a salt manufactury, sightseeing and what would be an ICC at the sea-side without swimming at the beach?
The traditional ICC café was organized in the backyard of the hostel between 21:00 and 23:00, where we – besides drinking and chatting – also could play Darts or Air Hockey.
As for the workshops, creating a workshop wishlist worked as follows: You choose 12 workshops by ticking the checkboxes of your desired workshops and on the next screen, you choose three priority workshops from the list of your chosen workshops.
The workshops this year were really great and during the multilingual exchange workshop, I learned a few bad words in Italian, whereas I taught some German words. But besides the workshop, we had a lot of random multilingual exchanges finding out that Croatian words happen to be not really voul-rich, and the Belgian guys had a great laugh learning me Dutch tungue-twisters and learning German tungue-twisters from me.
On tuesday afternoon and Friday morning, however, Silke, Eddy and I held our first workshop sessions of “Tourist Or Traveling Abroad” in ICC! The difference between the workshop Silke and I held in Belgium and the workshop on the actual ICC in Zadar was the age difference.
Whereas some of the participants in belgium were already in their mid-twenties or older and therefore had a lot of their own stories to share, there was a little less input from the participants in Zadar, although we had a little more input during the first session on Tuesday afternoon; in any case, the participants were between 16 and 21 years old and a lot of them haven’t yet been traveling abroad on their own. Anyway, it was a great success and it was a great pleasure organizing and co-tutoring this workshop’
Wednesday evening was free of leisure-time activities, so with the whole German delegation and some of the Belgian guys, we went to a restaurant for dinner, after which we went swimming at the beach.
The excursion day to the national park “Krka” took place on Thursday. It took a little while to get there by bus and before we left the bus to walk along the waterfalls, there was a short speech on the PA-system of the bus concerning some facts about Krka. The walk was nice and I wish I would have taken some more recordings for a sound experience 2go after ICC. 😉 However, because of the hot weather, I was happy when I could sit down on the boat for a short rest and in the end, all the pationce paid off when we had lunch, which was probably the most delicious and typical Croatian lunch we had on the entire camp!
In comparison to my past ICCs, the excursion day was a little shorter, so we already departed back to the hostel in the late afternoon. Since we had a quite late lunch-break, we skipped dinner and I went swimming with some of the Belgian and English guys instead before attending the general assembly, where we – besides other topics – also got introduced to some of the facts for ICC2019 in England.
Sunday morning, of course, was free of any obligated activities and we had a later breakfast in the city and went to the beach to go swimming or just sit down for a chill-out.
The fare-well party took place on Monday evening in the backyard of the hostel. This time, we created our own version of 21 guns by Greenday, which ended up to be the performance of the German delegation at the fare-well party and I tell you, we rocked the house indeed! After the performances and a few speeches, we had a great time celebrating around the hostel before we all had to depart again.
The Lufthansa flight back to Frankfurt turned out to be a partial ICC flight, because we were joined by good old Belgium, the UK, Japan and Switzerland.
Since our flight was scheduled at 18:40, we had plenty of time to walk around in the city, buy some souvenirs and get an ice-cream at a café before returning to the hostel to board the bus to the airport.
The flight was a smooth one, but in comparison to the small airport in zadar, it took us ages finding the place to retrieve our luggage!
After saying fare-well to those who were picked up from the airport, the rest of us went down to the train station to catch the train home.
As for Evi, Juliane (two staff members), Marie and me, we had a longer way home, but at least we were booked on the same train into the direction of Hamburg. First, however, we joined the Japanese delegation traveling to the central station to hunt for dinner before eventually getting on the IC train to Hamburg.
I always disliked the idea taking the train from Frankfurt to Hamburg (or the other way round) via Cologne, but as I had to travel onwards to Stade, there was no alternative except for arriving in Hamburg in the night waiting for the first train to Stade in the morning. Also, the price for a ticket was rediculously low, so here we all went! Thinking back to it, it was a hell of a trip, but I probably wouldn’t have done it without good company; so if you happen to read this, thank you all, it was a pleasure to travel with you! 😀
I don’t remember too much about my arrival anymore, but I had a long, long rest when I finally got home!
Although it was insanely hot in Zadar and there were a couple of communication lacks which made things a little stressful, it has been a great pleasure to be there and I do not regret a single second of those ten days in Croatia, so hvala for everything!
And last, but not least, here is the lyrics to our version of 21 guns by Greenday, performed during the fare-well party:
Thank you well, dear ICC,
for your engagement and your energy,
for our group and everyone here,
ICC, you are so amazing.
You’re an institution of national trust,
24 years won’t be past,
there where you are, is a wonderful place,
Show us your face!
Oh 24 years, every year in another country,
oh 24 years, beautiful towns we ever had seen, ICC!
So many workshops have taken place,
from socializing to exploring space,
creative writing, traveling abroad,
ICC, we thank you a lot!
During this time we learned so many things,
on our excursion to the Krka springs,
the leisure times were so much fun,
A big family all over the world,
The experience with you, boys and girls,
we will never forget this great time,
thanks a lot ICC, we will wait for the next year!