Hey Guys ♥
By now you know how the application and selection process for the internship went, but the really stressful part was only just beginning. After the first few days of euphoria and disbelief and then euphoria again, it was time to settle matters in Germany and prepare everything for my departure to India. I got the call on December 1st, which meant there were only 2 ½ months left before my departure in February. If you’ve ever spent a considerable amount of time abroad, you know how many annoying things need to be taken care of. I’ll take another assessment center any day before going through that again 😀
The first things I did were quitting my current job, and then tell my landlord that I was already moving out again. Suddenly, I found myself on the other end of the apartment hunt, which was certainly a welcome change 😀 I actually had to take the ad offline after only 30 minutes because of the number of applicants. I quickly found someone who wanted to rent the apartment, and my landlord was generally okay with him as the new tenant, but was a bit worried about the fact that he was a professional musician and would practice inside the flat. Which is how I found myself in the middle of a privat concert played on a 300-year old baroque violin to see if the neighbors would mind. They didn’t, and that was one more obstacle out of the way.
Now it was time to get a passport (including a frantic, but ultimately successful search for my original birth certificate) and all the recommended vaccinations (including a frantic, but ultimately unsuccessful search for my vaccination card). By now, the assistants at my doctor’s office know me by name, which isn’t too surprising considering that I went there almost every day to get vaccinations during January! Tomorrow I’m finally getting my last rabies shot, and then I’m done 😀 Throughout the weeks following our acceptance for the internship program, we kept hearing back from Springer regularly, getting new information, tips, but also to-do lists with things we needed to prepare for our stay at Crest in Pune. After we received our official employment contract (aka proof that I was going to move to India), it was time to cancel my broadband and electricity contracts, which worked surprisingly well (and quick!).
And then the last big step: getting a Visa. Thankfully, Springer supplied us with an extensive folder of all the documents necessary for our application, plus a handy guide on how to fill out the online application form, which meant that the actual application wasn’t all that complicated (despite a few hiccups and uncertainties). They even reimbursed the fees for our Visa applications! On Friday morning, I went to Frankfurt to apply for the Visa in person, and after less than 45 minutes (including the time it took me to take a passport photo) I was already leaving again. Monday evening, I already received an email saying that I could pick my passport up again. At first I ignored this, thinking that it would be stupid to pick the passport up before the Visa was ready, meaning that I’d have to go there twice, but then I realized that it probably meant the Visa was ready too so I went there today. After waiting for another 15 minutes or so, I am now finally in possession of an Indian employment Visa 🙂
Now, you might have noticed that there are certain topics you’d expect in a post about going abroad that I didn’t touch upon, namely flights, accommodation, health insurance, … That’s simply because I did not have to prepare anything in that regard! Springer offers their interns what they call the “100% sorglos Paket” (“100% carefree package”), including free flights to and from Pune, shared apartments, and health insurance. They even went as far as sending us a list with books available at our apartments, prepared by the present interns in Pune, so that we wouldn’t have to carry heavy books with us that were already in our apartments. I guess when you work for a publishing company, a certain level of bookishness is to be expected 😀
And just like that, there was only one more thing left to do: saying goodbye to family and friends in Germany. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to say goodbye to everyone in person, but I was able to have one last dinner with my amazing (now ex-) colleagues and will spend the next ten days or so traveling through Germany (and to the UK!) to say goodbye to as many people as possible. That should get me prepared for the flight to Pune 😀
In two weeks, the preparation days will start, and I’ll probably update you then with a post on German-Indian communication, cultural differences and how to live and work as a German in India 🙂
See you then! ✿✿✿