A Life in a Year
Ines INA AFS to NED (YP 17/18)
Hoi! Here I come again with the last 3 months story of my exchange year. Alright, let me introduce myself first. My name is Inez, I am an AFS-er from Indonesia to the Netherlands in a year program of 2017–2018. I currently living in a town called Mijdrecht, in Utrecht province. It is about 30 minutes to drive from Amsterdam, the capital city of this beautiful country. Now I have spent 287 days here, my second home. I thought one year would be enough for me to explore and enjoy all things in other country, but then now I realize that I have only one month left to spend my time with the people I love here. It is almost, almost finish. There are so much fun, so much love, so much memory. This short newsletter will not be enough to describe all memories have made with family and friends. What can I write for a remembering of nice things I have done? Here we go.
This year, this special exchange year is filled with so much happiness and love from people and I think it’s time for me also to share love with other people. I joined a small organization of youth where they meet every Friday evening to share things and dinner together. We share fun things with love and laugh and also some serious discussion about something. With this youth group, we also invite people from the street to come and join us to share happiness together and play. We take them inside us and once in a month we have like a workshop or programs where we can learn something, how to do good, and learn about God. It is such a beautiful place to be and share love with everybody. Another one, I joined few times a girls group for children around 10 to 12 years old. The same things we did, and I also gave them a small workshop to do ‘handlettering’ and it was so much fun with all of the children.
These few last months I spent with my friends and my family to explore more in the Netherlands. We went to several cities to visit like Delft, Tilburg, Breda, Groningen, and many more. Also explore the city with AFS cultural activities. On 2nd of June 2018, our chapter of AFS, North and South Holland, had a event for exploring Leiden. We had a really nice day and explore the city in a nice way, it is called Scavenger Hunt. There were several questions which we have to answer, but to get the answer we had to find some code on the city. We had also to do a game named ‘ruilen’ which means ‘switch’. We were given a few apples and few small snacks. We had to switch those things with something more worthy by asking other people if they want to switch their things with our apples or snacks. Some people were so excited about our game. At the end of our game, we had a bouquet of flowers, mozzarella cheese, jar of peanut butter, a book, Stroopwafels, and many more things. It was so much fun with a great idea to explore the city.
27 April 2018 — Kings Day. One of the cultural activities every year is celebrating the birthday of the King in the Netherlands. It starts in the morning with a market called “rommelmarkt” when the center of the city is full of people selling their stuffs, new or second hand, with a small rug on the ground. It’s full of orange, red, white, and blue for clothing on this day. Everyone is wearing something with orange accent on it. It is such a pleasure to feel the orange atmosphere in the whole of the Netherlands.
Thirty days left to spend in this beautiful and lovable country with lovely people. Only few weeks to go and my exchange year will be finished. It is also fine to come home and tell everyone about my experience and what I have done. But still, it is still a sadness to say goodbye to everyone which has filled my days to be great. The only thing that bums me out is thinking about all of the people that touched my world briefly that I will probably never have anything to do with ever again. But again, this is my special experience which I will never regret. Ten months ago I start this life in the other side of the world, but now my exchange year is soon over, and I will leave my family and best friends, to return to my family and best friends. ❤