I took part in the AID (Annual Introduction Days), organized by and for students of Wageningen University (Netherlands), which took place from August 16 to 20. Therefore, I had to go to Wageningen, then go back to Utrecht for the final examination of the EILC (Erasmus Intensive Language Course), on Tuesday 19, and return to Wageningen.
On Friday 15th August 2008, I caught the train to Ede-Wageningen, where I caught the 88 bus to Droevendaalsesteeg (the nearest bus stop from Forum building).
I was lucky, I had not bought any “strippenkaart” (strip card) yet and the bus driver didn’t have any “strippenkaart” to sell, so she told me I would have to travel for free.
The “strippenkaart”, already abolished and replaced by the OV-chipkaart (a card that can be used to pay all public transports in the Netherlands), was a ticket composed of several strips to be validated when used.
I arrived at Forum, the main building of Wageningen Campus, where the main part of all educational facilities is housed. I registered myself at the Wageningen University and I picked up my room keys, there.
Together with other students, I was driven to Asserpark, a high-rise building consisting of 16 floors, where my room was located.
I couldn’t be happier with the room given to me. It was in Asserpark, the cheapest building and the one with the best location to go to Forum and to Biotechnion buildings, the places where my classes and thesis took place. Beside that, my room was in an international corridor on the 16th floor. You can imagine the great view I had from there.
My room, like any of the other rooms, was equipped with a bed, a desk, a chair, a wardrobe, a central heating and internet connection. I shared the toilet, the shower and the kitchen with the other 7 tenants (both male and female) of my corridor. As it was a fully international corridor, it was equipped with a washing machine, a fridge, a stove and TV and the corridor was cleaned by the tenants. Every week there was a tenant responsible for cleaning the kitchen and the lavatory room and another tenant responsible for the bathroom and the corridor.
But the 16B corridor was not being properly cleaned. The first time I saw the kitchen, I couldn’t believe someone was cooking there. It was disgusting! The dust bins were full and there was garbage spread on the floor, the floor was covered by a grease layer, the sink was yellow due to the food residues left behind from improper cleaning, the table…well, let’s skip it, the microwave wasn’t any better, the fridge was smelly and it was filled with expired food. Everything was dirty.
It took a few days before I was able to cook there. First, I had to clean the kitchen, at least to make it usable, and I had to buy some kitchen utensils. Me, together with other tenants, removed all the expired food and the ice from the fridge and from the freezer and we cleaned it.Over the time, the 16B corridor became a cleaner and more pleasant place to live. We also got a new floor in the kitchen! The old floor was removed together with all that grease.
You can see in this map the location of the places mentioned above.