Getting to Leiden

Hello there!

Getting here was quite exhausting. Our first flight was to Washington DC, and we were supposed to arrive there about an hour and a half before our plane to Amsterdam left. Unfortunately, the flight to Washington DC was majorly delayed. When we finally got there, we were ever so pleased to see that the gate we had to get to was on the complete opposite side of the airport. We were sprinting through the airport, and we had to take about a million escalators to get to the underground tram, then a million more escalators to get back up to the gates. We were able to board our plane with five minutes to spare, and we were dripping in sweat.

The longest flight I’ve ever been on was about two and a half hours, so this seven hour flight was a little bit tough. I couldn’t sleep at all. I watched the same movie three times. Also, the cold I’ve been fighting for the past three weeks decided to rear its ugly head again, so I was coughing up a lung throughout the entire flight. I am still feeling pretty awful today. I’ve been ingesting tons of vitamin C and trying not to sleep during the day so that I can beat this jet lag, but so far I seem to be fighting a losing battle.

After we got to the airport, our housing coordinator Daniel met us and took us to the train to Amsterdam, which departed directly below the airport. He showed us how to buy tickets for when we begin traveling around Europe. We were all exhausted from our long flights and from dragging our extremely heavy luggage throughout the airport. Once we got to Leiden, we decided to walk to campus since it’s only a seven minute walk. Fun fact: dragging luggage through cobblestone streets is never a good idea. I am still sore today, but that could also just be aching from being sick.

Today we did a little exploring and so far I love this adorable town. There are way more bikes than cars – there aren’t even any traffic lights! We explored the supermarket, Jumbo, where I only bought cereal, milk, and water because I was overwhelmed. There is a great selection, though, and we can get pretty much anything we need there. I definitely need to learn some Dutch. It would definitely make shopping easier. I was really worried I was going to accidentally buy gross milk, but I am happy to say that it was not gross!

Hopefully I’ll start feeling better so I can do some more exploring and post more pictures, but I attached the ones I’ve taken so far. Thanks for reading!

Alexia

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View from my room!
Leiden at night! This was taken through a window, so it's not great.
Leiden at night! This was taken through a window, so it’s not great.
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Bikes for days. They were seriously everywhere.
Doner Box! It's a lovely mixture of chicken, fries, lettuce, cabbage, and some magical sauce.
Doner Box! It’s a lovely mixture of chicken, fries, lettuce, cabbage, and some magical sauce.
My first meal in Leiden. A turkey sandwich with chips and some kind of sauce that was really yummy.
My first meal in Leiden. A turkey sandwich with chips and some kind of sauce that was really yummy.
View from my room!
View from my room!
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