by Katja Blöchlinger
In the very early Istanbul morning, the Marmara University team got up and travelled to the newly opened Istanbul Airport. Everyone was excited to finally meet their co-organizers from Konstanz, with whom they have prepared the whole IstKon 2019 program. At the airport in Zurich, the 32 Istanbul participants were welcomed by members of the Konstanz Core Team and accompanied to the bus who then brought everyone across the Swiss-German border to the city of Konstanz.
Since a vital part of the IstKon Exchange is its buddy system, where everyone gets a buddy from the other team, the students firstly met their buddies in person right after their arrival. It was a big hello, especially for those people who have already known each other since the last IstKon. The joy and excitement in everyone’s eyes already signalized that the whole group will spend a great time together, enjoying the diverse academic and cultural program. However, the weather decided to show everyone how it usually is in Germany: Suddenly, it started to rain and it was so windy that umbrellas could not be used anymore – a good reason to have a warm shower afterwards.
A special feature of the exchange in Konstanz is, that the buddy of the visiting team is hosted by their counterpart. Therefore, first things first, everyone took their hosting guest home and the Istanbul participants could accommodate themselves and get some rest before the evening program started. During a pub crawl in Konstanz’ most famous student bars the group got to know each other better by answering some interesting questions, such as “If you could have dinner with anyone in the world, who would you want to invite?”. Although everyone was feeling tired from the journey, the atmosphere was really nice and the pub crawl provided a great starting point for conversations among the participants.
Since it is well known that IstKon is offering a lot of socializing opportunities throughout the week, most of the participants decided to call it a night early to be ready for the opening ceremony planned for Sunday morning.