We are now ready to start a new semester in
It all actually began back in July 2008. After my camp with youth movements, I went to
way, I went to
intensely busy with Germanic languages and especially Dutch, the system is very positive since you get the opportunity to live five months with native speakers of your studied language. A disadvantage could be the fact that you don’t really get in touch with other Erasmus students from other countries and this is supposed to be one of the most positive point of an Erasmus exchange.
This was thus the beginning of my story in
In the beginning, I must say that I was quite disappointed with the way my housemates lived. I thought it wouldn’t be very different from what I knew in
emates were very nice, but they were not very often present in the house. They often ate at the university restaurant, thus rarely at home. This is the opposite way of living than what I knew in
was a student in Germanic languages too and this eased the contacts I could have with him. I had al
so once a 2 hours conversation with another “kotgenoot” about our beautiful little country and the differences we can have between the northern and southern part. It was very interesting to discover the Walloon people in the eyes of a Flemish guy.
But these social aspects of my life in Leuven were not the only reason I left
er and one with a linguistic character. Very easy then to find courses you like and you have interest in. The courses I chose were (the links are the full description in Dutch of the courses which are listed here after): Nederlandse volkskunde (a course about Dutch folklore), Populaire genres (a course about non canonical forms of literature and more especially literature for children and teenagers), Kennismaking met de Spaanstalige wereld (a course that introduce you to the history and culture of the Spanish-speaking world), Literature art and religion in Europe (the title gives enough information about what I did in that course) and Sociolinguïstiek (a course about the way the social structure of our society can influence the way we speak and the way language is generated). These five courses were very interesting and I enjoyed them a lot. The differences I could observe between courses in
were evaluated. I had in
Now that my Erasmus exchange is over and that I’m about to come back on my beloved 5th floor, I take a look back on what I did during the last five months and I must admit that it was a really great experience that I would start again if I had the opportunity to do so. For those who are interested in visitting Leuven, don't hesitate any longer, just go and let the city of Leuven
charm you as it charmed me.
Het stadhuis (city hall) op het Grote Markt en beeldje op het Fochplein.
If I had to choose for one thing I found the most interesting in my exchange, I would mention the opportunity to listen carefully to native speakers of Dutch and learn little things they say everyday and that I never learned before. Among these observations, I could name one for example that really struck me: young people in Leuven never say goodbye using words as “Daag” or “Tot ziens”, but they often use a French word that I’m going to use to end this little review of my Erasmus exchange in
KULeuven catchphrase: Discover yourself, begin with the world.