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Working at VHEY? Our German work experience tells all!

Wanderlust

Hello guys,

My name is Louisa and I come from Germany. In this Blog entry I’m giving you an overview about my time in Hull, England and my story in which I explain, how it came about to travel to Hull this year. You can use my experiences as an inspiration when you need a new target on your travel radar.

One day, as I went to school as always, I noticed that I needed a change of scene around me. I knew that I had to go and travel. In this moment, I didn’t know where to go. I mean, yes, I knew which places in the world I wanted to explore because everybody has some dream-targets they want to travel to but I just wanted to travel, no matter where it would take me.
So I started to inform about offers and followed nearly every single site on social media that offered and promoted journeys and that exactly made me even more excited to just pack my things and go.

But in this moment, I totally forgot about the offer of my school because I hadn’t really acclimated yet because it was the beginning of the school year at a total new school with a total new overall concept – but anyway, I totally forgot that it was a precondition or even an inherent part of the educational program to make a work placement abroad. Every student had to choose a European country to apply for a work placement, if possible in a company that is working in the economic sector because our school really focusses on economic and all the stuff taking part in it.

I chose England, just because I was always interested in its culture and I always thought that I could identify more with their culture as with the culture of my hometown and of the country I was born in and to be honest, I always hoped to understand any other country abroad better than I would ever understand mine.

Meredith from the VHEY team said:

 

Meredith "It was fantastic to have Louisa with us for the week, she was a great asset to the team. Seeing the city through her eyes and reading her blog was incredibly valuable to us and I hope she enjoyed her time here. We wish her every success for her future studies".

A few weeks later, my tutor organised the placements for all students and I was really excited and contented to see everything working. There we also had to choose between Beverley and Hull, which are both cities in the East Riding of Yorkshire in England.

As a few months passed and everybody had send their CVs to the companies, I started to become nervous because I made really bad experiences with the internships I did before and I tried to ignore the sorrows of not being understood by the people or losing the orientation in a city I have never heard about before I actually went there.

The time was running and the time period till we would go away just contracted more and more and one day, we got all the information about the different departments we would work in because the work placement had to be three weeks long and every week, I would have to go to another company so the organisational stuff gained the upper hand. But there I noticed that the city council of Hull was the most organised thing I had ever seen and that is an absolutely excellent performance related to the things that German people do in cliché.

Just one example – I know, all the German people won’t be amused by reading this now – but seriously, it’s frivolous to get insurances for everything, even for dogs, old mobile phones and for all your chattels…

~That was the first thing that impressed me and I haven’t even arrived to the city…~

 

It was this morning, a week later as I realized that I would have to leave. I enjoyed the fact that I would be travelling in a few days and what I always enjoy is gaining new and more experience, many impressions and an insight in a new culture.

One day before the trip started, I packed my things and was glad, but still a bit nervous to be away for three weeks. I mean, all of my friends would go to school and they would be at home in the afternoon and I won’t be able to visit or drive to them spontaneously when they call me. However…I always tried to remember that this was exactly what I wanted the whole time I was at home.

On the morning of the trip, I woke up really early and right after the last German breakfast I ate for a few weeks, my parents drove me to school, where the minibus should be leaving around 13 o’ clock. With the minibus, we drove to Rotterdam, where our Ferry, a P&O ship then brought us to Hull. We stayed on the ferry overnight and about 8 am, we finally arrived in Hull.

Before I went there, I had never heard about Hull so I became interested in the general things you have to know about a city like the amount of people living there, the characteristics and last but not least the size because that was always a thing that was really decisive for me when it came to a city I heard about and didn’t know if I should travel to it or not.

So as we arrived, we were firstly taken into our accommodations. We were 9 students, two of them were taken to Beverley to stay at a family and the left 7, staying in Hull, drove to another family or a guesthouse. Rather 4 stayed at the family and the other 3 at the guesthouse. I was one of those, staying at the guesthouse.

~The drive to the guesthouse was already the second thing that really impressed me.~ Bedroom at the Guesthouse

 

On our way from the harbour to the guesthouse, we firstly drove through some really big streets with huge buildings standing on it and I sat there with an opened mouth because of the size of the buildings and listened to some really old music the driver listened to.

Arrived at the guesthouse, we went up some stairs and unlocked our rooms. I had a really cool double-room that I shared with a girl, a friend of mine, who wasn’t really enthusiastic about everything that has happened so far.

We both wanted to see a bit of the city. I tried not to look at photos of the city while searching for information before the trip because I had the impression that the city had a lot to offer for me and I thought I would be more impressed when I see the sights and everything the first time in real.

After walking out of the guesthouses door, we tried to get into the city centre but that later shaped out as the first time we completely lost our orientation.
The next day, I started my work placement. I was really nervous and that’s also what the people noticed, I think. But anyway, I did a lot of really cool stuff that seemed to fit perfectly for me and that was exactly the kind of work I hoped to get since I knew that I had to do a work placement.

Beside the normal tasks I got in the one week I worked in the company, it became one big task to find out more about the city.

The most interesting thing for me, over all the other beautiful things was the Hull minster church, which reminded me of a typical building of the 14th Century. Especially the lovely water plates in front of the building (you can see them on the photo on the right hand side) are quite amazing!

"Hull Minster church and me looking at the huge bell tower" "Me looking at Hull Minster"
"water plates mirroring the church" "water plates mirroring the church"
Maybe that’s also the main relation to the second thing on the list of my personal favourite places to go in Hull that needs to be the guildhall.
On the photo below you can see the coat of arms that I had firstly seen on the entrance of the guildhall. Maybe because the building of the guildhall was the first thing I noticed because it is quite impressive!
Guild Hall, City Crest and Feren's Art Gallery

So, I got a task at work in which I had to draft some tweets for their twitter account and because I wanted to find some inspiration, I started a big research and the joke here is that one of their slogans is ‘think you know Hull? Think again.’ So that is what I did, I searched for some – many people would say - random details but this is exactly what makes the guildhall and especially the coat of arms one of the most interesting things for me. The first thing I asked myself was why there are exactly three crowns and not just one on the coat of arms and what I found out was that it stands for the ‘holy trinity’.

The relation to the church now is that before may 13th this year, the Hull Minster Church was called: ‘holy trinity church’...that is a nice relation because these two things were exactly the two I liked most and noticed at first and as a result, we can say that Hull inspired me to think about the holy trinity a lot more than I did before!
Now another really lovely sight is the huge square of the city Hall, the Maritime museum and also kind of the Ferens art gallery that connects all of those buildings and has some really energising fountains right in front of the city hall!

Louisa's Tweets
All that seems to fit perfectly to Hull’s title: Hull city of culture but there are a few other things you should really visit when you travel to Hull.
On the streets of Hulls old town, you can find a fish trail that really surprised me but if you want to see some living fish, the deep is just perfect for you.
I went to the deep and saw really cute Gentoo penguins and their babies, turtles, sharks and many other interesting fishes but to be honest, I expected much as I saw the huge building of this aquarium but all in all I was really impressed because I’ve been to many aquariums in Germany and they were not a quarter as good as the deep in Hull! That’s a real tip because you can really spend hours watching all the fishes swim and the penguins jump into the water or be fed by someone!

I have to say, in this week, Hull has really impressed me and I had never thought that a city I had never heard of would make me such a huge fan!

Sure, there are a lot of different things I found astounisching but I just wanted to show you some things you can’t find in every magazine or website. These are just a few things I personally enjoyed the most and that should inspire everybody who wants to travel to Hull because it is a journey worth it, really! But I think everybody should make his or her own impression of this beautiful, unique city but I hope that my own experiences can be an advantage for You too!

Here are some more pictures of interesting sights in Hull you can visit if you are there!

Louisa's pics

And because I haven’t really talked about the company I worked in, I think I have to do it now.


It was the VHEY Team in Hull that gave me the chance to write this blog!
Thank you for the week I was allowed to work for your company, it was a great time!!

 

Louisa

Pacific Exchange