The End (& some random pictures from the whole trip)
August 11 & 12 – The last day for some of us. Some participants had to leave early or had an early flight. Today we enjoyed the last moments together and made plans to see each other again some day. Gifts and phone numbers were exchanged and some wrote messages for each other on shirts etc.
Anna was the first to leave and some shed tears. A new friendship felt so old and trusted.
Last pictures were made and we helped Anna with her luggage to the other side of the bridge. The exit of our island, our camp..
After a sad ‘see you soon’ – and not a ‘goodbye’- we continued packing and reminiscing our adventures together. Before we even noticed it was already evening and that meant: Time for the BBQ! We heard something vague that our host parents would be coming too. That made us even more excited but when it was time for the BBQ we were very disappointed again in the organisation. Because not all host parents knew they could come. So only some host parents came…
On the bright side, Urban came! You know Urban, the man who was with us when we went camping.
Staying up all night
Knowing that some of us had to leave in the middle of the night, we stayed up to say goodbye. At least some of us did. I was one of them.
When I said goodbye to Ioana, going back to Romania, I couldn’t sleep anymore. Did I even sleep? I can’t even remember because I was wandering through rooms, looking who’s still up.
Now I couldn’t sleep I just went to the water and had a zen-moment. A moment of peace. Everything was so quiet and I enjoyed the last bits of Swedish fresh air I could breath. I walked around our small island again, for the last time.
Checked everything for the last time and my bags were full and packed. It was time for breakfast.
The remaining group was devided in 3 shifts. The first shift left at 7, the second at 9 and the last shift at 11. I was part of the last shift, so I could wave everyone goodbye. But it felt pretty .. sad I guess. Like you’re one of the last humans alive hahaha. All the vibrant energy has left the island.
We arrived at Gävle, the town where I stayed with my host family. Now our last shift-group was split up in two because we all had different train tickets with different times.
In Sweden you have to reserve your train ticket and you have a seat number.
Just like in airplanes and I have to admit, their trains are super clean and modern. It’s probably working. But now I was alone with Carl and he had a different seat number so we gave our seat away to a mother with 3 children who wanted to sit next to each other.
We just sat in the hallway with our luggage.
At the airport we bumped in to some of our camp friends! They hadn’t left yet. PLUS Hakan was flying to Istanbul but he had a stop in Amsterdam first, so he was in our flight!
And guess what, he had the seat next to me in the plane.
His plan was to discover Amsterdam before his other plane left to Istanbul. When I looked at his tickets I told him he had exactly a half hour before his second plane started boarding.
His reaction was: “Whaaaat?” ‘Nooooo’.
I already suggested Vincent and I could tour him around Amsterdam because Vincent was picking me up anyway with the car. Now it would be impossible.
Carl, Hakan and I stepped out of the arrival gates after we gathered our luggage.
All I saw was a busy crowd of people waiting for someone. I couldn’t see Vincent. So we walked through the crowd when suddenly Vincent jumped behind me, he gave me a big hug and just didn’t let go.
Carl left with his father and Vincent and I decided to give Hakan the half our Dutch tour, through the airport yes. He bought some souvenirs and we dropped him off at his gate and went home.
As you can see new friendships were born. I discovered that all participants are different, from other countries and cultures, but we are all the same in a certain way. Peace.
Personally that was the best part of this whole experience.
‘We’re all different but we’re all the same’