De weg terug
Monday, August 29th, 2011. The time has come to try, try “abandoning” the dutch lifestyle I had in the past 20 days. I will miss all the landscapes, the freedom to go anywhere with my bike, the fun in speaking dutch, all lectures and labs involving Haskell… But I’ll miss, mainly, THE PEOPLE. All the incredibly nice friends I met. So here it goes, a group picture of my Summer School, quite incomplete :|
After the farewell lunch, and after taking the above shot, the REAL farewell began. Most people went home already on Friday, which made me quite lonely and depressed for the following 2 days in Utrecht. This whole depression is, though, a long story that has no room in this public blog.
Between the 26th and 29th of August I was lodged at hostel “StayOkay Utrecht - Bunnik”. The place is absolutely great, by all possible objective criteria, and I definitely recommend it to everybody. The not so objective criteria are part of the aforementioned long story… To describe the beauty of the hostel buildings and surroundings, a photo comes in handy:
On Sunday evening, with only 20 hours before the beginning of my journey back - and missing A LOT all the people I met - I decided to go for the last time to Universiteit Utrecht’s campus at De Uithof (a long 1h walk), where I took several farewell pictures. Here’s one of them:
From then on all I did was to pack my stuff, take a good shower, have dinner, sleep and begin the journey back. I was even a bit happy to go back, because being with family and friends at home was surely better than those last 2 lonely days… The following pictures illustrate the exact “cronology” of my return trip, that began Monday morning, with a walk from the hostel to the “Rhijnauweselaan” bus stop :)
At 7:21am I took ths bus no. 43 to Utrecht Centraal Station.
Taking a look at the departures panel I noticed that in 3 minutes, at 7:43am, the next train to Schiphol Airport was departing. I then walked to platform 5, got into the train, and the doors closed :) 8:00am the train reached its final destination, Schiphol. Just after getting off the train I took this photo:
I climbed the escalators from the train platform to the HUGE main hall of the Schiphol Airport, took a look at the international departures list and then walked to check-in desk 17, where after waiting some 30min in line I finally dropped my luggage for flight KL0791 to Sao Paulo, departing at 10:10am. The next step was passport control, which took me another 30min. After passport control, and after walking some more 10min, I reached boarding gate E20. This gate:
This time security procedures included the not-so-popular Full-body-scanner. After going through it, and having my hand luggage scanned as well (around, 9:45am), I was ready to board the plane. At this moment I took my final photo over dutch ground:
My transatlantic return flight was calm and comfortable. My seat was originally 18G, but as an act of kindness I changed seats with the boyfriend of the lady to my left, act of kindness which took me to seat 39E. There was the whole Paraguayan team of the World Youth Day 2011 :) After some 12 hours of a relaxing flight (no irony here, it REALLY was relaxing) with 5 delicious on-board meals, we touched brazilian soil at 4:49pm (local time), in the International Airport Gov. André Franco Montoro, Sao Paulo. There it goes, the same plane as in the last picture, but now in Brazil :)
30 minutes was the time it took until I got my bags from the luggage belt, another 30min to check-in for the connecting flight and ANOTHER 30min to go through passport check and security scans. At 6:40pm I was calling home and telling my parents to go wait for me at the airport. At 6:55pm, flight G3 1064 of Gol Airlines finished boarding and initiated take-off, we were flying to Florianópolis!
At 8:10pm (brazilian time), after 20 unforgettable days, I was again at home, over Florianopólis’s soil - very wet due to the strong rain then falling. Done! The journey back home was finished, the Utrecht Summer School 2011 was officialy ended. Now the rest are memories. Memories and the huge hope of returning and meeting those people and places again.