Haranni-Gymnasium - Zukunft mit Herkunft

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Nina Haverkamp, Sophie Schöppner

When are we going to arrive in OXFÜTT?!

Once upon a time, a group of forty students decided to go on a journey.

They all went to the same school, called Haranni Gymnasium, in the sleepy German town Herne.These tenthgraders did not know what consequences their decision would have and how many adventures they would go through in the coming six days.
When the paperwork was done the start of their travel seemed to be many months ahead. But as always, the time passed and suddenly it was the day of departure.
Everybody was standing in front of the school, obviously tired, and was waiting for the bus to arrive. But as soon as they got into the bus the students were wide awake. How could anybody think of sleeping now? Even if it was 5 o'clock in the morning, the party started already and would not come to an end until the bus had arrived in Oxford.
Sixteen hours of travel, first through Belgium, the Netherlands and France, then they took the ferry over the Channel. Many of the students can still remember the beautiful view they got as they approached the chalk cliffs on the south-east of England. Now everybody started to get excited about their host families. Would the prejudices about English families prove right? Would the houses be clean and - most important - the food be good? A few hours later the bus arrived in Headington/ Oxford and the faces became serious, there was no more joking around. The students were picked up in groups of two and three. Then the night came and they did not talk since there was no WiFi in most of the families - what a disaster!

Students In Front of Oxford CollegeBut the next day the sun rose again and Karsten, the very best bus driver, picked the students up to bring them to the city of Oxford. Or, what they liked to call it, Oxfütt. Oxfütt soon became the slogan of this journey. Since it was February, it was freezing cold outside. But the brave German students kept concentrated during the three hours of their guided city tour. (If you don't believe this, ask the teachers – it's the truth!)
They learned a lot about the different colleges in town and their history. And finally they got to the interesting part – shopping! There was plenty of time to do whatever they wanted to, so everybody came back with many bags under their arms, pretty exhausted, but content. After the long day, the adventurers were happy to be back at their warm houses.London - Big BenTuesday began and finally they made it to London. Karsten, Mrs Böttcher and Mrs Beckschulte, just as Ms McGoldrick kept being cool during the ride. They already knew that this day would be relaxing for the group. The sun was shining and a nice Lady guided the whole in cooperation with Karsten through London city. It was a good way to teach the students some history facts without boring them to death. And, last not least, they got to have a look at some impressing sights such as the London Eye, Big Ben and Buckingham Palace. Two and a half hours later, the Germans were dropped off at the BBC Centre at the Oxford Street. They had time to have lunch and then, the best program point of the week started. It was the tour through the BBC.

Weather Forecast I BBCThe day was rounded off with a walk through beautiful Chinatown and Covent Garden.
It was already Wednesday and time to visit Stratford upon Avon. First the group had a nice walk through the typical British rain to Shakespeare's place of birth. Surprisingly, Shakespeare was not at home, neither his parents or his siblings. It was still nice for the youth of the 21st century to have a look at living conditions four centuries ago. Can you imagine that there was no internet at all? Not even TV? No surprise that Shakespeare started writing poems out of boredom. The Globe Theatre in London
Later on the students drove to Birmingham to visit the factory of the popular chocolate brand Cadbury. There was free chocolate for everybody! So this trip had already paid off. They went back home and got back to their host families for the last night in Oxford.
Now, finally, the day that everybody had been looking forward to, began. Karsten drove them to London and they spent their last day in the capital of the United Kingdom. There was plenty of time to explore Oxford Street and do some excessive shopping.
Unfortunately it started to rain excessively, too. Weather Forecast II BBC
So the last hours in the UK became a real adventure. Wetted from tip to toe, they came to Shakespeare's Globe Theatre which had a huge hole in its roof. Actually, it was an open-air theatre, as it was built in the 16th century. Back then, people had no central heating, so you can barely imagine how the audition was freezing. Well, the students felt like they could imagine it now. After a short tour, they took part in an acting course. Surprisingly everybody was having fun, even though they had expected to be bored. The actress asked them to go together in groups and only speak one sentence that was given by her. The students got creative and put some of Shakespeare's quotations together to little stories and acted them out.

Students in OxfordAfter all, they had only one thing left to do, which was to find the bus. Easier said than done! It took one hour of walking through the rainy London to finally get into Karsten's rolling castle. The, now proven, adventurers did their best to dry and change their clothes in the bus and got prepared for the long ride back home overnight.
As they spent time together during this journey, they got to know each other better and many friendships were made. This trip taught them to support each other and also to have fun in difficult situations. The students learned a lot about England, thanks to the teachers who proved their strong nerves and kept cool all the time.
The students will keep these memories in their heart for their lifetime. And if you ask one of these forty people for "Oxfütt", you will see them smile for sure.