With this post, I try to catch up with what happened in the past few weeks before my internship which, from yesterday on, has already begun. I started writing this post a little earlier, long before my internship started, so here we go, better late than never…
My internship is getting closer and closer and finally, my o&m lessons have started. The main goal of those o&m lessons is to familiarize myself with the way from my flat to work, the nearest train station Hamburg Altona and the near surroundings.
On the first day, I tried to get familiar with the train station Altona which, in the beginning, appeared to be a nightmare. Although tactile strips on the floor help you not losing track, it takes a while to memorize which strip to follow, where to turn in which direction, etc.
As my cane teacher said: “Imagine a big square-shape; that’s how the train station basically looks like”. After getting familiar with it step by step, from day to day, it makes sense; nevertheless, it still feels like there are more possible exits than corners but although I occasionally still follow the wrong strips from time to time, I got the hang of the most important places.
The next step in my training was finding the bus stop and catching the right bus.
I find the square outside the train station surrounded by bus stops pretty crowded but not impossible to navigate in order to find the right bus stop. Even in Hamburg, some busses stop with their front door in front of you and sometimes, the driver announces the bus number and direction before I can ask. However, in comparison to Marburg, it happens less often; but what do I have a mouth for anyway?
The bus stops near my flat are easy to find and the streets are not very crowded. Although the traffic light doesn’t beep nor vibrate, it is not too hard to determine when it is best to cross the street.
The way to work is a bit tricky, at least as far as the first few meters are concerned. There is a lot of traffic on the Max-Brauer-Allee and, guess what, another silent traffic light. Nevertheless, I can determine whether it is green anyway (when the traffic comes to a stop). However, I’d rather ask if someone is around to be certain. Fortunately, I don’t have to cross the street when I want to catch a bus to go home.
Also, the crowded street is pretty much the only thing I worry about in particular, and when I crossed the Max-Brauer-Allee, all the rest of the way (through the back streets) is not crowded at all.
In a nutshell, I am prepared enough to make it to the most important places I need to know safely, and I am looking forward to my internship and when I move into my flat!